10-01-2008 13:48Special Report: 2008 Beijing Olympic Games
GENEVA, Sept. 30 (Xinhua) -- The Beijing Olympic Games were "truly exceptional" in many aspects, including the universality of participation, the level of performance and the quality of sports facilities, the chief of International Olympic Committee (IOC) said on Tuesday.
Jacques Rogge said the Beijing Games were "truly a great success", and he had good reason to declare the Games as "truly exceptional" at the closing ceremony on Aug. 24.
Indeed there were a record 204 national Olympic committees, out of the world total of 205, attended the Games in Beijing, Rogge told a press conference in Geneva.
Eighty-seven countries or regions won medals during the Beijing Games, against 60 in Athens, which demonstrates the universality of the Olympic movement increases, he said.
The Beijing Olympics were also exceptional in terms of the level of performance. "We have 43 world records beaten, which is a record, because we have never had so many records beaten at the Olympics," Rogge said.
The IOC chief also highly praised the Olympic village and the sports infrastructure in Beijing.
"I myself have visited 18 villages in Olympics, and I can tell you it was a village of superior quality," he said.
He said the Olympic stadiums in Beijing, the Bird's Nest or the Water Cube, were really extraordinary in terms of architectural quality.
And what is important is that the sports infrastructure was designed for use after the Games, so it was actually a long-term investment for sports development of the country.
Rogge also expressed satisfaction with the Beijing transportation network, which functioned remarkably during the Games.
He said he was very pleased with the media coverage and television broadcast of the Beijing Games. "We had a high quality of television images... it was the first Games that have been broadcast in high definition."
According to the IOC chief, television audiences have really exploded on an average of 20 percent to 30 percent from the Athens Games in most countries.
The IOC's anti-doping efforts also bore fruits during the Beijing Olympic Games.
"Even if doping will never be resolved of course, we are more credible than ever and it is more difficult for athletes to use drugs," Rogge said.
About 4,500 doping tests were carried out during the Games compared to 3,500 in Athens four years ago.
Rogge said the Games had certainly left an important legacy for China, which includes sports sites, general infrastructure such as the new airport terminal and the improved subway system, as well as improvement in the field of environment.