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The Olympic Truce

Everyone knows about the Olympic Games, but what is the Olympic Truce? ASPnet schools in some 40 member states in all parts of the world have accepted to pilot the educational resource,‘The Truce Story’, in order to find out more.

In ancient Greece, the Olympic Truce lasted from the seventh day prior to the opening of the Olympic Games to the seventh day following their closing, and throughout the duration of the Games. All conflicts ceased during this period, thus allowing athletes, artists and spectators to travel to the Olympic Games and return to their homelands in safety. The idea of the Olympic Truce is therefore based upon the belief that athletics and Olympic ideals should contribute to peaceful co-existence.

The Olympic Games and the Olympic Truce or "Ekeheiria" (meaning the ceasing of hostilities during the duration of the Games) are closely linked. This is why, in the light of the forthcoming Olympic Games in Athens, Greece, in August 2004, the Director-General of UNESCO, Mr. Koïchiro Matsuura, has endorsed a booklet for young people published by the International Olympic Truce Centre (IOTC), entitled ‘The Truce Story’. This innovative educational resource material aims to teach core principles such as tolerance, co-operation and respect through the positive aspects of sport, and to mobilize young people in support of the Olympic Charter and the Olympic Truce, whose spirit is shared by UNESCO. ‘The Truce Story’ helps teachers and students by stimulating reflection and action aimed at solving conflicts and tensions peacefully and putting into practice the Olympic ideals.

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Publication Year 2004-09-02 3:00 pm

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