2030 Winter Games bid approved despite lack of Aragonese support
Spanish Olympic Committee, Spanish Government and Generalitat join forces to change Javier Lambán's mind without changing the proposal for the distribution of venues
BarcelonaThe headquarters of the Spanish Olympic Committee (COE) in Madrid has been chosen to formalise the technical proposal for the bid to host the 2030 Winter Olympic Games in the Pyrenees. The event went ahead despite the fact that the Aragonese president, Javier Lambán, decided to reject the proposal that all parties had considered valid a week ago, and therefore puts the whole project at risk.
As explained by the ARA, the three parties, the COE, the Spanish Government and the Generalitat de Catalunya, have decided to "validate the proposal" agreed by the technical commission, while they wait for "the Government of Aragon to join". Catalan Presidency minister Laura Vilagrà claimed when she arrived in Madrid that she had made the trip "to definitively seal an agreement". "We have had six technical meetings in which we have negotiated and finally we have closed a proposal. The COE has summoned us precisely to sign this agreement and that is what we have come to do," she said before meeting with the president of the COE, Alejandro Blanco, and the Secretary of State for Sport, José Manuel Franco.
In today's meeting there were no Aragonese representatives after President Javier Lambán distanced himself from the proposal because he considers that the two communities are not on equal terms. Vilagrà considers that the agreed proposal that Blanco made public is "a good proposal from the competitive point of view and for the possibilities of winning, of being selected as an Olympic bid". Regarding the absence of the Aragonese government, she said: "We will not wade into the controversy. We have had many hours to debate. The proposal is good, it is a winner, it is competitive and we will not budge". Vilagrà recalled how long it took to reach an agreement on the distribution of venues. "We also wanted to have all the skating in Catalonia and it has not been so. We will not change anything, we will not open the debate".
A few hours earlier, the Minister of Sports Miquel Iceta asked not to "politicize" the candidacy and defended the need to find an agreement between all parties, since the candidacy needs the participation of both Catalonia and Aragon.