Zagreb, 10 September 2021 - President of the Republic Zoran Milanović received the athletes - winners of medals at the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo 2020 and delegation of the Croatian Olympic (COC) and the Croatian Paralympic Committee (CPO), and on this occasion he presented to the Croatian Olympic Committee the Charter of the Republic of Croatia for the 30th anniversary of its work and activities.

Congratulating them on their medals, President Milanović thanked the Croatian female and male Olympians and Paralympians, pointing out that Croatian female and male Olympic medalists have done a wonderful thing for the Republic of Croatia.

- I don't know if - when you started training long time ago, that is, in your youth - you were driven by thought or feeling of personal ambition, family ambition, desire to do something for yourself or for your homeland, but you really did the latter. You made us all very happy, we watched closely what you were doing, said President Milanović to the athletes.

The President of the Republic expressed regret that other female and male athletes who were in Tokyo and did not win medals were not present in the Office of the President.

- I'm sorry that today we do not have here the girls and young men who missed winning the medal by a blink of an eye, by one breath, by one heartbeat. They also deserve our respect, not gratitude, because what you're doing, you're doing it first and foremost for yourself, this is your life. Croatia owes you; you have done a wonderful thing for Croatia. Thank you once again, move on, fight, concluded Milanović.

On the occasion of 30th anniversary of the Croatian Olympic Committee’s work and activities, the President of the Republic Zoran Milanović presented the Charter of the Republic of Croatia to the NOC of Croatia for extraordinary encouragement in development and promotion of Croatian sports at home and abroad and support to Croatian athletes in achieving the highest national, European, world and Olympic results in all sports branches.

Receiving this recognition, the President of the Croatian Olympic Committee Zlatko Mateša said that he gratefully receives the Charter on behalf of all those who have carried the glory of Croatian sports around the world for the past thirty years and who have put Croatia ahead of many other large and richer countries in terms of number of medals won.

- This is all what remains of these ladies and these young men and all those who performed at the Olympics and who are part of their sports successes - the coaches, the heads of federations, Secretaries General, federations’ secretaries, hundreds and hundreds of people who have dedicated themselves to promotion of the Croatian sports for thirty years. Your recognition is extremely important to all of us, said Mateša.

On behalf of the Croatian Paralympic Committee, its President Ratko Kovačić addressed the attendees of the reception, highlighting that the Croatian Paralympians returned from Tokyo with excellent results.

- We've won seven medals, something we have never achieved before at any Paralympic Games. We have thus shown that we are keeping up with the world, that we are succeeding, and even in quite difficult conditions, we achieved good results. It is clear that support for further strengthening of sports of people with disabilities is essential, said Kovačić.

The reception at the Office of the President was attended by female and male medal winners at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, their coaches and expert staff, representatives of the Croatian Olympic and Paralympic Committee as well as representatives of Croatian sports federations. (NOC of Croatia)