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  • World Kurash Wrestling Championship starts in Ashgabat

Aşgabatda Kuraş boýunça dünýä çempionaty badalga alýar


Ashgabat once again becomes the venue for the next major sports tournament. According to the Decree of President Serdar Berdimuhamedov, the Olympic Park of our white marble capital city will host the 14th World Kurash Wrestling Championship from November 23 to 28, which is to write another vivid page in the history of Turkmen sports.

The organization of the global scale championship is a new evidence of the transformation of Ashgabat into a recognized international sports center, broad support from the world community to the targeted strategy for the development of physical culture and sports, which is one of the priority directions of the state policy of Turkmenistan, being successfully pursued under the leadership of President Serdar Berdimuhamedov, and the National Leader of the Turkmen people, Chairman of the Halk Maslakhaty, our Hero Arkadag.

“Sport is strength, beauty and health. Eagerness to do sports means love for life. Sport is important both for our physical and spiritual health, and for the health of our society as a whole”, National Leader of the Turkmen people Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasized, addressing the younger generation with a general lesson on the occasion of the Day of Knowledge and Student Youth and the beginning of the new academic year.

On the Hero Arkadag’s initiative, compulsory physical training lessons have been introduced in all schools, secondary specialized and higher educational institutions, which creates conditions for the harmonious education of the younger generation.

In recent years, ample opportunities have been created in the country for the development of the sports movement, including the construction of modern sports and recreation complexes, multi-type stadiums, equestrian centers, sports schools and other specialized facilities with the necessary equipment in all regions. Furthermore, medical centers, specialized clinics and sanatoriums with equipment from leading world companies have been built in the capital and velayat centers. On this basis, great success has been achieved in creating the advanced sports and recreational infrastructure that meets international standards.

One of the striking illustrations in this respect is the innovative city of Arkadag, where such sports facilities as a Multi-Type Sports Complex, an Aquatic Sports Complex, and a 10 thousand-seat stadium were built, and the Main Department for Physical Culture and Sports of the first “smart” city in Turkmenistan was established.

The emergence of an Olympic Park with modern complexes for Olympic sports in Ashgabat, which has no analogues in Central Asia, contributed to bringing Turkmen sports to a new, higher level.

National Leader of the Turkmen people Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov established another wonderful and kind tradition of holding mass bicycle rides. This initiative has been widely supported and appreciated by our compatriots, who are happy to participate in regularly organized sporting events in the country that promote health and instill in people a respectful attitude towards the environment.

At the suggestion of Turkmenistan, World Bicycle Day, established by the relevant Resolution of the UN General Assembly, is widely celebrated on June 3 every year. This fact was another evidence of international recognition and high appreciation of our country’s efforts in the field of sports, physical training and health improvement, the cultivation of an ecological worldview in society as the basis for sustainable development both on the national scale and globally.

The establishment of this date, which symbolizes such universal human values as health, solidarity, friendliness and commitment to humanistic ideals, opens up wide path for popularizing sport as a messenger of peace, and strengthening fruitful cooperation between countries and peoples.

The next step was the unanimous adoption on the proposal of Turkmenistan of the Resolution “Integration of mainstream bicycling into public transportation systems for sustainable development” at the 61st plenary meeting of the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly on March 15, 2022, co-sponsored by 62 states.

“All these achievements are, undoubtedly, a positive outcome of the peace-loving, neutral, good-neighborly policy, being successfully pursued for universal peace by our independent state, which calls upon humanity to consolidate efforts to strengthen global peace, unity, wellbeing and prosperity”, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov emphasizes.

On the occasion of World Bicycle Day in 2023, a bicycle ride was traditionally held that started from one of the attractions of Ashgabat, the “Bicycle” Monument, with the participation of President Serdar Berdimuhamedov, who, being an honored coach of Turkmenistan, invariably devotes time to sports.

Nowadays, more and more children and young people are interested in cycling, which is confirmed by the participation of children from the “Döwletliler köşgi” Palace in bicycle rides by.

It should also be noted that in 2018 and 2019, two important events took place in Ashgabat, which we included in the Guinness Book of Records, such as “The most massive cycling lesson” and “The longest bicycle parade along one line, uniting 2019 cyclists”.

The holding of iconic sporting events that strengthen spiritual power and vitality and the significant increase in the number of cycling fans in our country in recent years indicate that concern for the active development of this sport is carried out at the state level. This is another confirmation of the success of efforts undertaken by our state aimed at developing mass physical training and high-performance sports.

The invariable priorities of the socially oriented policy being pursued by Arkadag Serdar include the principles of a healthy lifestyle laid down by National Leader of the Turkmen people, Chairman of the Halk Maslakhaty of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.

This is quite obvious from the regular holding of mass sporting events and trees planting campaigns that unite thousands of our compatriots of all ages and professions.

Manifesting the most responsible government approach to promoting health and maintaining the wellbeing of the Turkmen people, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov keeps the focus on stimulating, popularizing and developing the mass physical training and health-improving movement and sports.

Thus, the arrangement of areas for active recreation and sports grounds is an integral requirement for residential areas being built, which contributes to improving the population’s health, especially the younger generation. The sports component is also an indispensable condition for the construction of educational and preschool institutions, which infrastructure includes modern, well-equipped gyms, football fields, basketball and volleyball courts, swimming pools, and tennis courts.

Thanks to the work in progress, the citizens of Turkmenistan are successfully and with great enthusiasm excelling in both summer and winter sports from an early age, including hockey and figure skating, which development, despite the climatic conditions of the Central Asian region, is gaining momentum in our country.

Improving physical culture and sports and developing the healthy lifestyle principles are also embodies in national legislation. Evidence in this respect is the adopted Laws of Turkmenistan “On Physical Culture and Sports” (revised), “On Horse Breeding and Equestrian Sports”, “On Volunteering”, “On the Fight against Doping in Sports”. In 2015, our country joined the Nairobi Treaty on the Protection of the Olympic Symbol, adopted in Nairobi on September 26, 1981. A Joint Statement “On Encouraging the Valuable Contribution of the Olympic Teams of Refugees to the Strengthening of Peace and Human Rights” was adopted on the initiative of Turkmenistan at the 36th session of the UN Human Rights Council in September 2017.

In the period of the Revival of the New Epoch of the Powerful State, thanks to a comprehensive strategy initiated by National Leader of the Turkmen people, Chairman of the Khalk Maslakhaty Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, and is currently successfully implemented by President Serdar Berdimuhamedov, domestic sports have been brought to the higher qualitative level.

Thus, the 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games held in Ashgabat in 2017 were an undeniable triumph, resulting in a grand festivity. In 2018, the International Rally “Amul-Khazar 2018”, which route ran along the historical Great Silk Road and the World Weightlifting Championship were held with great success.

In June this year, the Turkmen capital became second time the venue for the Central Asian Tennis Team Championship among boys and girls under 12 years of age, where young athletes from six countries, Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan, competed for the title of the strongest.

Now Ashgabat is ready to host another major world-level tournament. In order to hold the World Kurash Championship at a high level, President of Turkmenistan Serdar Berdimuhamedov signed the Decree on July 12, setting up the Organizing Committee and approving the list of its members.

Kurash is a traditional belt wrestling of the Turkic peoples, which originated in Central Asia. This martial art has a three-thousand-year history, which has made it one of the most popular sports in the region. In recent years, kurash has been actively developing throughout the world, and to date, the International Kurash Association (IKA), established on September 6, 1998, includes 118 national federations from Asia (32), Africa (22), Europe (33), North and South America (22) and Oceania (9).

The World Kurash Wrestling Championships were held annually from 1999 to 2002, and every two years since 2005. The current 14th World Championship is expected to gather together a record number of participants. According to the latest data provided by the Kurash Federation of Turkmenistan, more than 490 people have applied for the World Championship in Ashgabat, including athletes (243), coaches, judges and other officials from 53 countries, which is much more than for the previous World Kurash Championships held in various countries.

As a member of the International Olympic Committee and the Olympic Council of Asia, our state makes a considerable contribution to the development of the international Olympic movement. Fulfilling its sporting capacity for peace and friendship, Turkmenistan systematically strengthens and increases cooperation with the international community.

In this regard, on the eve of the 2023 World Kurash Championship, a landmark event was the unanimous election of Turkmenistan as a member of the UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Committee on Physical Culture and Sports for 2023–2027. As is known, this Committee was founded in 1978 in order to enhance the role and importance of sports and its inclusion in public policy. It is noteworthy that our country was previously elected as a member of this Committee for the period 2017–2021 and actively participated in its activities.

All this testifies to the high international prestige of our Homeland, as well as recognition of its significant contribution to the development of physical education and sports, and the widespread popularization of the principles of a healthy lifestyle all around the world.

Sport has been and remains the most important component of international cooperation, and athletes are messengers of friendship and peace who, with their skill and will, strengthen the high ideals of Olympism. That is why the training of professional athletes, coaches and other specialized personnel has been identified as one of the key areas in the National Program for the Support and Development of Physical Culture and Sports in Turkmenistan for 2021–2025 and other state programs.

The history of domestic sports is full of a series of brilliant triumphs, which in the new historical epoch are complemented with high sporting achievements, including the first Olympic silver medal in the women’s weightlifting tournament at the 32nd Summer Olympic Games held in Japan in 2021.

Thus, the current constellation of young athletes of the country, whose grandiose successes and victories fill the hearts of the citizens of Turkmenistan with a sense of pride, successfully carries on the tradition of their predecessors.

Our athletes participate in many international tournaments and almost always come back with prizes, including the highest medals.

“We must organize the World Kurash Championship, which will be held in Ashgabat in November this year, at the highest level, and properly prepare for performances at the Summer Olympic Games, to take place in France next year. And we are firmly convinced that our athletes, defending the sports honor of Independent Neutral Turkmenistan as a country of health and inspiration, will demonstrate an example of patriotism and high skill at international tournaments!”, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov emphasized in his speech at the historic meeting of the Halk Maslakhaty of Turkmenistan.

The 2023 World Championship, at which 15 sets of medals will be competed in seven men’s and eight women’s weight classes, will be held at the martial arts sports complex of the Olympic Park. The mission of our athletes is to enhance the reputation and prestige of domestic sports o the best of their abilities, for which a lot is done in the country, including under the personal patronage of President Serdar Berdimuhamedov and the National Leader of the Turkmen people, our Hero Arkadag.

Thus, the current tournament, which will unite representatives from different countries of the world, will be a real grand celebration of peace, friendship and sport for both athletes and fans.

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