Minsk, June 20,  2019 - The flag-raising ceremony of the participating countries in the eve of the European Games in Minsk significantly differed from previous tradition before major multi-sports events. There was no single flag lifting in the reserved period for each Sports Delegation, but all the flags welcomed the participants on the masts and the symbolics of that act was shifted to a more lasting memory of the Games’ host. Namely, representatives of 50 countries chose two athletes who planted - in the future park, outside the Sports Village - oak trees, and a plaque with the flag of a country was immediately  added to each planted oak.


The "Croatian Oak Tree" in Minsk was planted by the golden Olympic archer from London Giovanni Cernogoraz and welterweight boxer Marko Zeljko. They did it quickly, but also with quality, to the satisfaction of around thirty members of the Croatian Sports Delegation. They both promised that one day, when the paths of their sports career bring them back to Minsk, they would definitely visit the "Croatian Oak Tree". The event that resulted in 50 new lives was an introduction to the certainly  most spectacular Opening Ceremony of the European Games in Minsk on Friday (June 21st), scheduled to start at 10 p.m. local time until after midnight. (CNOC/VK)