DUSHANBE, July 19, 2008, Asia-Plus  -- On Friday July 18, Bahrullo Rajabaliyev, the head of Tajikistan’s National Olympic Committee (NOC), met with journalists, who are members of the Association of Sports Reporters of Tajikistan (Association).  

The meeting, held within the framework of the fifth training course for members of the Association, was dedicated to preparation of Tajik athletes that will participate at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.  Tajik athletes will leave for Beijing on July 31.  

Speaking to reporters, the NOC president said that the Tajik delegation to attend the Olympic games in Beijing numbers 30 persons, including two reporters.

During the meeting, the reporters brought the issue of prize money to Tajik medal winners at the Olympic Games to the NOC president.  The Association head noted that local entrepreneur Abubakr Azizkhoja had promised $10,000 in prize money to Tajik gold winners.  

“It is good when individuals sponsor development of sports in the country,” said Rajabaliyev.  “It is to be noted that authorities of the Central Asian countries have set wards to their athletes who win Olympic medals.  Thus, Kazakh President Nurusultan Nazarbayev has announced that Kazakh gold winners will receive $250,000 each; meanwhile, our government has still remained silent.”

We will recall that fourteen Tajik athletes have qualified for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.  Among them are Dilshod Nazarov (hammer throwing), Galina Mityayeva (track and field athletics), judo players Rasoul Boqiyev, Sherali Bozorov and Nematullo Asronqulov, free-style wrestlers Yusuf Abdusalomov and Vitaly Koryakin, boxers Anvar Yunusov, Jahon Qurbonov and Sherali Dostiyev, swimmers Yekaterina Izmaylova and Alisher Chingizov, female archer Albina Kamolitdinova, and weightlifter Nizom Sangov.    

The 2008 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XXIX Olympiad, will be celebrated from August 8, 2008 to August 24, 2008.  Some events will be held outside Beijing, namely football (in Qinhuangdao, Shanghai, Shenyang, and Tianjin), equestrian (in Hong Kong) and sailing (Qingdao).  This will be the third time the Olympics are held under the jurisdiction of 2 different NOCs (Hong Kong and mainland China compete separately).

The Olympic Games were awarded to Beijing after an exhaustive ballot of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on July 13, 2001.  The official logo of the games is titled “Dancing Beijing.”