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Record number of delegates attending ANOC General Assembly in Prague Featured

ANOC President Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, left, and IOC counterpart  Thomas Bach will both be in attendance at the ANOC General Assembly. ANOC President Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, left, and IOC counterpart Thomas Bach will both be in attendance at the ANOC General Assembly.

2 November, 2017. Leading powerbrokers from across world sport are arriving here for a week of Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) meetings due to start tomorrow.

The week will culminate in an ANOC General Assembly due to take place on Thursday and Friday (November 2 and 3).

It will also include an ANOC Gala Awards Ceremony on Thursday night.

In total, all 205 of the world's recognised National Olympic Committees (NOCs) are scheduled to attend along with a record total of 1,300 delegates.

Representatives from Kuwait and Brazil - nations currently suspended by the IOC - will also be here.

International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach is also due to appear, while ANOC counterpart Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah has already arrived.

A statement today said that the General Assembly will "provide ANOC with the opportunity to update the NOCs on the organisation’s progress, and listen to and understand the NOCs concerns and priorities".

"The ANOC General Assembly is crucial in harnessing the collective power of the NOCs and ensuring that we are speaking with one voice," added Sheikh Ahmad.

"By moving the General Assembly to an annual event it has allowed us to forge more productive working relationships and give NOCs an opportunity to raise any issues they may be facing.

"We encourage all NOCs to contribute their comments and questions so we can ensure that we are delivering them the very best service.

"We are also honoured that IOC President Thomas Bach is attending the General Assembly and we thank him for his ongoing close collaboration.

"Many representatives from International Federations will also be here in Prague as part of our ongoing commitment to constantly strengthening the relationships between NOCs and IFs, which will ultimately benefit the entire Olympic Movement."

It is unclear, though, to what extent this will include key current challenges, such as the Russian doping crisis and various corruption investigations.

Sheikh Ahmad himself still faces IOC Ethics Commission proceedings after being identified in a United States Department of Justice document in April in a case involving Guam's Richard Lai, who pleaded guilty to charges of receiving nearly $1 million (£773,000/€915,000) in bribes connected to football governing body, FIFA.

The Kuwaiti denies any wrongdoing and has already been cleared by the Olympic Council of Asia Ethics Committee.

Last year's ANOC General Assembly in Doha was most notable for delegates fiercely attacking World Anti-Doping Agency President Sir Craig Reedie after the Qatari capital's laboratory had its accreditation suspended on the eve of the meeting.

A series of Commission and Working Group meetings are scheduled for tomorrow before an Executive Committee meeting on Wednesday (November 1).

An update and confirmation of the sports programme for the inaugural ANOC World Beach Games due to take place in San Diego in 2019 is expected to be given.

General Assembly meetings of the Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa and the Pan American Sports Organization (PASO) are also scheduled for Friday and Saturday (November 4) respectively.

Oceania National Olympic Committees (ONOC) is holding a breakfast meeting on Wednesday (November 1). Tonga National Olympic Committee (TASANOC) delegates to the Assembly is led by President, Lord Tupou and accompanied by Secretary General Takitoa Taumoepeau.

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