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Well impressed by the closing ceremony, almost the perfect mix.

Yes, there were some rehashes from other ceremonies, but as I've said before, this is going to happen more and more.

Definitely could tell the creative team was different between both ceremonies, but not a bad thing.

I think both opening and closing ceremonies were for the most part on the money.

I personally do believe the opening did show emotion and joy. It may not have been in a *let's all wear bright clothes, hold balloons and bang on stuff we found on the side of the road* joy, but it was emotion of (whatever you may think of the govt now) a proud culture.

I found the stage and set design in both ceremonies incredibly thoughtful, some fantastic music, awesome pyro , and great concepts.

Loved the small but well formed concert section for the closing too. Loooooove John Newman :)

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OMG you queens need to get a grip! Heaven forbid that a lesser game copies something that the bigger games (the Olympics) actually does! For a non-Olympic OC this is incredible, and actually a far bet

I enjoyed that opening ceremony. Parts of it were a little bit hit and miss, but by and large was a unique production. I guess there were 2 key points out of it. Klepsydra 2.0. Now this production

Official website: http://www.baku2015.com/default.aspx Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/baku2015 Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/baku2015official Twitter: https://twitter.com/BakuGames2015 70

I agree with Galandar. It's true that there were not many spectators for sports like triathlon, but there were always many people in the venues in Baku and they made a lot of noise to cheer on Azerbaijan.

I have followed the Games mainly online both on the official website and on the Spanish broadcaster site and I have enjoyed them a lot. And Spain has made it to the top 10 in the medals table!

I hope the European Games will keep on taking place.

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I personally do believe the opening did show emotion and joy. It may not have been in a *let's all wear bright clothes, hold balloons and bang on stuff we found on the side of the road* joy, but it was emotion of (whatever you may think of the govt now) a proud culture.

coughcoughmanchestercoughcough

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I understand the vision of you, and I'm not saying that all events were ghosts, but I really expected to see more people. It was really strange to see the outdoors event empty, perhaps because occurred in neighborhoods far away from the city?I dont know.


And the organization of the Games I think was very good. Again it proved that Baku has the ability to host the olympics.


I hope see more news here talking about the legacy of the games!
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Can someone explain to me what is happening with the 2019 European Games. I remember them being awarded to the Netherlands and the games would be somewhat spread out across the country but just read on Wikipedia that the Netherlands have withdrawn. Is this true? If so, who is likely to host in 4 years?

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Can someone explain to me what is happening with the 2019 European Games. I remember them being awarded to the Netherlands and the games would be somewhat spread out across the country but just read on Wikipedia that the Netherlands have withdrawn. Is this true? If so, who is likely to host in 4 years?

Someone mentioned Turkey is interested in hosting, but there might be a good chance that by the way things are looking right now, Baku could be hosting again if no one wants to step up to the plate.

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Someone mentioned Turkey is interested in hosting, but there might be a good chance that by the way things are looking right now, Baku could be hosting again if no one wants to step up to the plate.

I doubt it. This scenario is not possible since Azerbaijan has other priorities too. In the next few years Azerbaijan is organizing a number of other events, such as Chess Olympiad 2016, Formula 1 Baku Grand Prix, Islamic Solidarity Games 2017 etc. with EURO 2020 group stage and quarter-final games to play in Baku. Azerbaijan is also keen on grabbing either Champions Leage or Europe League final after 2017 and I believe it will continue bidding for Olympics putting a stronger bid every time.

As for the Turkey's interest, that is not a rumour. Turkish, Russian and Belarussian Olympic Committee Presidents told to media about their interest in hosting the next edition of the European Games. Russia told that they have at least four cities (Moscow, Saint-Petersburg, Sochi and Kazan) cabable of hosting it. Turkey told about bringing games to Istanbul or smaller cities such as Mersin and Antalya. Belarus told they applied to EOC about hosting the next edition in Minsk and they expect for the EOC's reaction. So the worst scenario for the European Games 2019 is once again to be hosted in Eastern Europe, namely in another former soviet country, however, EOC will do its best to bring the next edition to the Western Europe.

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I doubt it. This scenario is not possible since Azerbaijan has other priorities too. In the next few years Azerbaijan is organizing a number of other events, such as Chess Olympiad 2016, Formula 1 Baku Grand Prix, Islamic Solidarity Games 2017 etc. with EURO 2020 group stage and quarter-final games to play in Baku. Azerbaijan is also keen on grabbing either Champions Leage or Europe League final after 2017 and I believe it will continue bidding for Olympics putting a stronger bid every time.

As for the Turkey's interest, that is not a rumour. Turkish, Russian and Belarussian Olympic Committee Presidents told to media about their interest in hosting the next edition of the European Games. Russia told that they have at least four cities (Moscow, Saint-Petersburg, Sochi and Kazan) cabable of hosting it. Turkey told about bringing games to Istanbul or smaller cities such as Mersin and Antalya. Belarus told they applied to EOC about hosting the next edition in Minsk and they expect for the EOC's reaction. So the worst scenario for the European Games 2019 is once again to be hosted in Eastern Europe, namely in another former soviet country, however, EOC will do its best to bring the next edition to the Western Europe.

The next European Olympic Games is in 2019 and since Baku already has everything in place to host, what exactly do they have to build besides maybe a new olympic village? Emergency host cities aren't always expected to deliver a games exactly as a regular one because they are an emergency option where some sacrifices have to be made, so it would take nothing out of Baku for hosting in 2019 in a worst case scenario.

And we can start throwing names out left and right but the biggest issue with these games is how little time they give the next host city to prepare for the games. Baku managed to have everything built in time since it only had about 2.5 years since it was awarded the games. Sure the venues were not to the size of Olympic standards, but that is nothing short of a miracle. The EOC really needs to give these host cities more time to prepare for the games, even our Pan American host city selection is done 7 years in advance. Not everyone can complete preparations for a games in 4 years or even have enough venues to minimize the need to build everything from scratch.

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The next European Olympic Games is in 2019 and since Baku already has everything in place to host, what exactly do they have to build besides maybe a new olympic village? Emergency host cities aren't always expected to deliver a games exactly as a regular one because they are an emergency option where some sacrifices have to be made, so it would take nothing out of Baku for hosting in 2019 in a worst case scenario.

And we can start throwing names out left and right but the biggest issue with these games is how little time they give the next host city to prepare for the games. Baku managed to have everything built in time since it only had about 2.5 years since it was awarded the games. Sure the venues were not to the size of Olympic standards, but that is nothing short of a miracle. The EOC really needs to give these host cities more time to prepare for the games, even our Pan American host city selection is done 7 years in advance. Not everyone can complete preparations for a games in 4 years or even have enough venues to minimize the need to build everything from scratch.

The EOC gave this to Baku precisely because they were willing to do it within 2.5 years though. Noone else was interested. And looking at 2019, the likelihood of getting another host who will move heaven and earth no matter the cost within short time seems very high, the EOC will probably just go for that again. Even though in reality they are probably desperate for a Western European host...

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OK. Watching the Closing now/

- Opening number OK. But aren't those 3 "drops" the former drops of the Paralympics' logo?

Interminable clip on the Volunteers and even more BORING entry of the athletes. I guess it's great to watch a recap so one can just fast-forward thru the boring parts like these.

Am now watching the techno-Energy dance. Very innovative...but am NOT liking it. I hate those "tron," Michael Jackson-type numbers. It's more a show for the programmers than these actual performers. If there was a glitch in the circuitry, the whole number would be blown.

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Part 2...

Enough with the "pinball" - Blue Man universe. A cold segment. Reminded me very much of the World Cup 2010 closing in Johannesburg, but that one was more playful with its special effects graphics.

The "sand painting" segment. The temple is beautiful...but the whole sand-painting bit doesn't work. If they had the big LED scroll, like in Beijing, then the "process of the painting" would be stadium-sized. But no one is seeing it at the top platform of the temple, except for the TV cameras. So a C- for this segment. Billowing waves and the "galletta" waves, we've seen in Barcelona, etc.

Scene comes to life with the "Fire" segment. U can't miss with fire. What's that? Where have I seen that bird before? This bird sure gets around!! (The phoenix / firebird /sima?.)

Oh wait...lanterns? That's not very European. :rolleyes: That's definitely Asian. Children of Light? Last saw 800 of them in Salt Lake City!!

Eh...AM signing off with the Ya-Ya, Woo-Woo dancers and the DJ (who "...lives in LA"???? How European is that? :blink: )

Overall, a B-. For closings for me, Sochi, World Cup 2010, London and Salt Lake '02 are still the best. Good try though, Baku.

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I still think 4 years is enough. If the European Games wan´t to go a western city they must realize that nobody will build 10 big new venues. It is about having venues in place already! So all that matters is the temp venues for some outdoor events, triathlon, road cycling, Beach volley and Beach soccer and like that. Those venues will not be build many years in advance anyhow...

In Copenhagen we have at that time a 10.000 indoor arena, 2 different 6-7000 indoor arenas plus 3-4 roundly 2.000 indoor arenas for judo, karate etc. I would still believe that many western cities have something like that also. Glasgow for example that just hosted Commenwealth last year could be a good example of that also.

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Well that happened.

An event on this scale just goes by unnoticed without the major Olympic sports being there in full, plus crucially free to air coverage. For the first couple of days I did go to the effort of finding some stuff on BT Sport or watching stuff via the Youtube app, but the novelty faded fast.

That said I'm glad Britain performed well, even without athletics, cycling and rowing properly represented.

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LEGACY:

Azerbaijan couple who called for boycott of European Games are jailed

An activist who called for a boycott of the European Games on human rights grounds was been jailed for eight-and-a-half years on Thursday, and her husband for seven, in what Amnesty International calls the ongoing criminalisation of those who speak out against the authorities in Azerbaijan.

Leyla and Arif Yunus were convicted of “fraud” and other crimes related to their NGO work at a trial in Baku. International observers and journalists were refused entry to the court and only a handful of diplomats were allowed to attend.

A charge of treason, purportedly for spying for Armenia, is also pending against the couple, but it has been sent to a separate court for consideration.

Leyla Yunus is the director of the Institute of Peace and Democracy and before her arrest had been documenting the treatment of political prisoners in Azerbaijan by the authorities. Arif Yunus is a historian and political activist.

Leyla was arrested on 30 July last year, five days after organising a press conference calling for an international boycott of the European Games, which were held in Baku in June this year. Arif was arrested a few days later.

Amnesty believes the charges against the couple were fabricated in retaliation for their legitimate human rights work and criticism of the Azerbaijani government.

Levan Asatiani, an Azerbaijan campaigner at Amnesty International, said: “These absurd charges have resulted in harsh sentences for Azerbaijan’s prominent human rights defenders Leyla and Arif Yunus. We urge the government to quash these convictions. Leyla and Arif Yunus are prisoners of conscience and they must be immediately and unconditionally released. The judicial system has once again revealed itself to be no more than a cynical tool by which President Ilham Aliyev crushes any dissent or criticism of his regime. His government’s human rights record is simply shocking.”

Leyla and Arif Yunus both suffer from serious medical problems and their health has deteriorated further in detention. On Thursday, Arif Yunus lost consciousness during the court hearing. He suffered two strokes in April 2014 and his family fears that he may not survive another.

Leyla Yunus has been diagnosed with diabetes and hepatitis C and has reduced vision in her left eye but the authorities have refused to transfer her to a hospital. She has reported being threatened, harassed and ill-treated after asking for medical care.

The Foreign Office has expressed grave concern over the judgment, the Minister for Europe, David Lidington, said: “I am deeply troubled by the sentencing handed down to Leyla and Arif Yunus. A number of aspects of the conduct of the trial reinforced the impression that the verdict was politically motivated. These included restrictions on diplomats and other observers accessing the court room. The apparent deterioration of Leyla and Arif’s health during the past year in pre-trial detention is also particularly worrying. We regularly raise concerns over Azerbaijan’s poor human rights record and will continue to pay close attention to developments in this area. We will also look for further opportunities to urge Azerbaijan to abide by its international commitments and respect the rule of law, while taking concrete steps to improve the human rights situation in the country.”

http://www.theguardian.com/global/2015/aug/13/azerbaijan-boycott-european-games-jail-sentences

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Gotta love when these countries will always blame the west no matter what with their silly conspiracy theories. Remember that Goebels used to said "We must make the people believe at all cost that the fault of all our problems is on someone else" And then you have the IOC which once again believed China's lies of doing a more clean enviroment. If they didn't do it for 2008 what makes them believe they'll do it in 2022?

What kind of support and love can i keep giving to sport events these days when they keep giving them to these kind of countries? At this pace we might see very soon an olympic games in Pyongyang.

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