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French Federation of Disability Sport chief lauds Beijing Paralympics

PARIS -- The ongoing Beijing Paralympics is as brilliant as the Olympics that was wrapped up last month, head of the French Federation of Disability Sport said Thursday.

"It has surpassed the previous five Paralympics I had attended," Gerard Masson told Xinhua.

Masson said he had attended Paralympics in Seoul, Barcelona, Atlanta, Sydney and Athens. He found the biggest difference of the current Paralympics with the previous ones is that it is as superb as the Olympiad held in the same place.

Masson said the Paralympics is by no means "a little brother" subordinate to the Olympics. Rather it is the second largest sports event in the world in terms of the number of participating athletes, he added.

He said he was impressed by the Beijing Paralympics, which has "the logistic support, equally beautiful stadium, cheering audience and excellent services from volunteers" similar to the Olympics.

He also observed remarkable progress of the disabled athletes in many countries, which he said has posed new challenges to French athletes who once enjoyed advantages in some events.

Masson said what impressed him most was the opening ceremony, which was "touching and profoundly symbolic," demonstrating to the world the humanitarian spirit, he said.

Date:2008-9-12 16:18:00     
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