BAKU, Azerbaijan (Jun 3, 2023) - IOC President Thomas Bach today joined World Taekwondo President Chungwon Choue at the Baku 2023 World Taekwondo Championships to support the competing athletes and enjoy the spectacular action on show.
Ahead of the evenings finals, President Bach and President Choue visited the Taekwondo for All stand on the side-lines of the competition to learn more about the meaningful work World Taekwondo and the Taekwondo Humanitarian Foundation (THF) are doing to support those in need. President Bach also met with the newly elected Athletes’ Committee members; Cheick Cisse (Cote D’Ivoire), Katherine Alvarado (Costa Rica), Daehoon Lee (Korea) and Yehya Al Ghotani who is the first-ever refugee from the Azraq Refugee Camp to participate in the World Championships and gold medallists from the World Championships to congratulate them on their performances.
IOC President Bach said:
“I want to congratulate World Taekwondo and particularly President Choue for an excellent World Championships. Working together with the Azeri Organising Committee this has been such a great showcasing for the Olympic sport of Taekwondo. This may also in part be the result of the great progress the federation has made with regard to the fair and transparent judging and refereeing system.
“It was a great opportunity to see the great respect and friendship of all the participating athletes of the 144 countries plus the Refugee team. It was the most fitting way to celebrate fifty years of the federation and it shows great promise for another excellent appearance of Taekwondo at the Olympic Games Paris 2024.”
World Taekwondo President Choue said:
“We are grateful to IOC President Thomas Bach for the support he continues to show to Taekwondo. It was our pleasure to welcome him to our World Championships and showcase the innovations and improvements we are making.
“This year’s World Championships coincides with our 50th anniversary and is a reminder of how far we have come. With 144 countries plus one Refugee team competing here in Baku, Taekwondo is demonstrating that it is a truly global and inclusive sport. We believe strongly in the role of sport to unite and promote peace and we will continue to work to ensure that Taekwondo is a sport for all and empowers refugees and those who need it most.”
Earlier in the day, IOC President Bach and President Choue had visited the Azerbaijan National Taekwondo Centre alongside Minister of Youth and Sports of Azerbaijan Farid Gayibov, and President of Azerbaijan Taekwondo Federation Kamaladdin Heydarov.