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Beijing Pledges Best Games Ever

Beijing pledges to offer first-rate stadiums, an optimal environment and the most considerate services if the city is chosen to host the 2008 Olympic Games.

Beijing Mayor Liu Qi said yesterday that plans for stadiums and the Olympic Village are designed with environmental protection in mind.

"We want to hold a 'Green Olympiad'," said Liu, president of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Bidding Committee. "We think human beings should be in harmony with environmental protection."

He also promised "scientific Games" using state-of-the-art technology.

"High technology will be used in almost everything, including the stadiums, Olympic Village, communication and traffic control," the mayor said.

Beijing is also committed to staging "human-oriented Games" that will put the interests of Olympic athletes above all.

"The Games will have strong visible characteristics and will boost the Olympic Movement," Liu said.

"In short, our stadiums, environment and services provided will be of the best quality," the mayor said. "We will do as we promise."

Liu, who started his career as a metallurgy engineer, said he hoped to build a steel bridge to symbolize the East meeting the West.

Beijing is competing with Paris, Toronto, Osaka and Istanbul for the right to host the 2008 Summer Games.

"If Beijing is chosen to host the largest sporting event on earth, it will open a window for the rest of the world to get a much closer look at an ancient city with a splendid civilization," Liu said.

"Beijing is the representative of the Oriental cultures and the Beijing Olympics will bring together the West and East," he said.

Indeed, Beijing also pledges to offer cultural Games.

Beijing, a 3,000-year-old city, boasts five UNESCO-certified World Heritage sites. They include the Great Wall, the Summer Palace, the Forbidden City, the Temple of Heaven and Zhoukoudian.

"The Beijing Games will be in line with the Olympic principle of blending sports and culture," Liu said.

Beijing is also developing the fastest among the five Olympic contenders.

"Beijing is a city of future," he said. "With China's entry to the World Trade Organization imminent, the great potential of the Chinese market will be further tapped."

Liu said the Olympic Games will speed up Beijing's changes.

"One of the Olympic legacies will be the acceleration of environmental protection and the improvement of people's livelihoods here," he said.

"The Olympic Movement can be a great boost to the city, and Beijing can embody the Olympic Movement in the most convincing manner," he said.

Liu said the Chinese capital will show itself in a frank manner, and he hopes foreign media will report objectively on China.

(China Daily 02/19/2001)

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