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Promote the Paralympic Movement and Join Hands to Build a Better World
2008/09/06

Toast by Hu Jintao,
President of the People’s Republic of China
At the Welcoming Luncheon of the Beijing Paralympic Games
6 September 2008

Sir Philip Craven, President of the International Paralympic Committee,
Distinguished Members of the Governing Board of the International Paralympic Committee,
Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Dear Friends,

The grand opening of the Beijing Paralympic Games will be held this evening. On behalf of the Chinese Government and people, I wish to extend a warm welcome to you all and the distinguished guests who have come to Beijing for the Paralympic Games. I would also like to express heartfelt thanks to thoseall those who have worked forcontributed to the Beijing Paralympic Games.

Since the 1960s when the first Paralympic Games was held and thanks to concerted efforts of the international community, the Paralympic Games has become an important cultural and sports event thatleading to helps enhancedeepe mutualr global understanding and, friendship among the people and promote humanthe growth of world civilizations. OThe Beijing Paralympic Games will attract over 4,000 athletes from more than 1450 countries and regions will participate in the Beijing Paralympic Games. This fully demonstrates the global careinterest in and support for sports foramong people with a disability.

“Spirit in Motion” is the motto of the Paralympic Movement. ByThrough participationg in the Games, Paralympians from around the world will display self-esteem, self-confidence, self-improvement and self-support. They will experienceshare joy, forge friendships, haverealize dreams and experiencetaste success. They will challenge themselves and bring out therealize their own value of life. The Paralympic Movement inspires people both with and without a disability to interact in the same global family, enjoy equal social rights and build a harmonious world together.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Dear Friends,

Care for people with a disability is an important hallbenchmark of a civilized and progressive societyies. There are 83 million people with a disability in China. The Chinese Government and people have always attached importance to their wellbeing. We follow the principle of putting people first and, advocate a humanitarian spirit and respect the value and dignity of man. We by stand forpromoting equality, opposerejecting discrimination, careing for the vulnerable and respecting human rights. We have adopted a range of policies and measures to encourage public care and support for people with a disability and actively promote their overall wellbeing, including excellence in sports, and o. Our achievements have been recognized byare for all to see. For their part, people with a disability in China have constantly strived to improve themselves and become stronger. They have made outstandingsignificant contributions to economic and social development in China and earned the respect of the whole society. TWe will use the Beijing Paralympic Games ias an opportunity for us to further promote the humanitarian spirit, protect the rights and interests of people with a disability and ensure that they will participate in social life and enjoyshare the benefits of economic and social development as equal members of the societyothers.

The Chinese Government attaches great importance to the development of sports foramong people with a disability, and China has been an active participant in the Paralympic Movement. Since winning the bid to host the Beijing Paralympic Games in Beijing in 2001, the Chinese Government and people have, with the strong support of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and the international community, earnestly fulfilled our solemn commitments to the world. We have set the goal of “two Games with equal splendor” and, guided byadhered to the concept of “transcendence, integration and equality”, made the utmost effort in the preparation forand done our best to deliver a Paralympic Games that is as splendid as the Beijing Olympic Games. I am confident that, with the support of the IPC and the world at large, weyou will deliversee a high-standard Paralympic Games with distinctive features.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Dear Friends,

“One World, One Dream” is the slogan of both the Beijing Olympic Games and Paralympic Games. I believe thatn my view, the Beijing Paralympic Games will provide an opportunity for people with a disability from all over the world to deepen mutual understanding and friendship, and it will leave a rich legacy to the development of sports foramong people with a disability. Let’s join hands to promoteimprove the wellbeing of people with a disability around the globe and make the world a better place!

I now propose a toast,

To the crowning success of the Beijing Paralympic Games,

To the robust growth of the Paralympic Movement,

To greater solidarity and friendship among people from all over the world, and

To the health of all the distinguished guests.

Cheers!

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