Monday, February 16, 2004

Aside from the immediate trip to Iran, another story I'll be covering later this year is the Olympics followed by the Paralympics.

I'm keen to do the Paralympics for personal reasons as much as anything, to see how other amputees and so-called "disabled" people are overcoming their difficulties.

But according to BBC Sport Online, Athens isn't ready to host the Paralympics.

"There is a lot of work still needed, especially with obstacles in the way on the pavements," says the International Paralympic Committee.

I can well believe it. During my recent visit to Athens to see the Olympic venues it was clear that the city's a nightmare for people with mobility problems. We're facing our own problems, too. Our "live position" for TV interviews in the International Broadcast Centre is halfway up a flight of stairs with no lift-- not great if you're trying to get up there in a wheelchair, as many Paralympians will be.

Yet strangely, this IPC press release is more diplomatically worded, painting a very different picture of Athens' readiness for the Paralympics.


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