"WE waited hundreds of years for this. And now that it's coming to an end, we are immensely proud that the 'One World, One Dream' has come to a realisation," China's Ambassador to Qatar Yue Xiaoyong said yesterday.
Addressing a number of dignitaries, Chinese community members, and others who were present at a 'closing ceremony' at his residence, he said China was happy that it could host the world for over two weeks.
The gathering had the opportunity to watch the live telecast of the closing ceremony from the Bird's Nest (National Stadium) in Beijing.
"We thank the world for the effort and the co-operation in making it (Beijing 2008) a success. We were only too glad to share and serve the people from all over the world," a gleaming Xiaoyong said.
"We were also happy to see athletes, those with medals and also those with no medals. The real winner was the sportsman spirit. We now wish best of luck to London that hosts the next Olympic," he added.
That goodwill was instantly received and acknowledged by the UK's newly-appointed ambassador to Qatar, John Hawkins who said: "We'd be deeply pleased if we can live up to the challenge, now a tough challenge."
Belgian Ambassador Guy De Lauwer whose compatriot, Jacques Rogge is the president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Qatari Foreign Ministry representative, Hamad al-Nuaimi, Qatar National Olympic Committee's Abdulrahman al-Mutawa and others were present on the occasion.
Al-Mutawa, who had just returned from Beijing, said: "It was amazing to be there. I'm glad my country participated and displayed sportsmanship. We've certainly learned a great deal from China and look forward to employ some of it when we bid to host Olympic in 2020."
(By Sarmad Qazi, Gulf Times)