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2006 - Distinctions

3 November 2006 - ANOC President Mr Mario Vázquez Raña distinguished as Officer in the Order of the Legion of Honour by the French Government

Mr Mario Vázquez Raña received from President Jacques Chirac the insignia of Officer in the Legion of Honour of the French Republic

Within the framework of a ceremony held at the Elysée Palace in Paris on November 3rd, 2006, M. Mario Vázquez Raña was distinguished by the President of the French Republic Mr Jacques Chirac with the insignia of Officer in the Legion of Honour "for the quality of his immense services rendered to Olympism world-wide". Amongst the many personalities attending the ceremony was the French Prime Minister, Mr Dominique de Villepin, who warmly congratulated Mr Vázquez Raña.

The French President reminded the audience in his commendation that Mr Vázquez Raña is a former shooting champion, and an eminent figure of the Olympic world : a member of the IOC Executive Board, President of the Pan-American Sports Organization (PASO), and President of the Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) since its creation in 1979, he has been at the head of Olympic Solidarity since 2002. President Chirac also underlined the quality of his professional career, mentioning that Mr Mario Vázquez Raña is the third world publisher of periodicals and the first in the Spanish language, and pointing out that this outstanding press manager is the author of "Dialogues with History", which features some 300 interviews of Head of States of the whole world.

Besides his wife, several members of his family and some friends, Mr Vázquez Raña was accompanied on this occasion by eminent personalities from the Olympic world, among others Mr Juan Antonio Samaranch, Life Honorary President of the International Olympic Committee, Ms. Gunilla Lindberg, Vice-President of the IOC and Secretary General of ANOC, Mr Lassana Palenfo, President of ANOCA, IOC members Mr Mohamed Mzali and Mr Guy Drut, Mr René Roch, President of the International Fencing Federation, Mr Alejandro Blanco, President of the Spanish Olympic Committee, Mr Pere Miró, Director of Olympic Solidarity of the IOC, as well as the former President of the Mexican Republic Mr Carlos Salinas de Gortari.

June 2006 ľ Australia
John Coates, President of the Australian NOC, IOC Member, received the highest Australian distinction in the Queen's Honours List, as he was made a Companion in the General Division of the Order of Australia (CA).

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