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Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 22891

Doorstop at Opening of Olympic Star Club Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney

Photo of Howard, John

Howard, John

Period of Service: 11/03/1996 to 03/12/2007

More information about Howard, John on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 16/09/2000

Release Type: Speech

Transcript ID: 22891

Subjects: Juan Antonio Samaranch; Cathy Freeman; Women athletes

E&OE……………………………………………………………………………………

JOURNALIST:

Prime minister, very sad news with President Samaranch’s departure from Australia. Can you give your reaction to that?

PRIME MINISTER:

Yes, I’m so sorry to hear that, but I knew that his wife was very ill and he had hoped that her condition had not deteriorated so that he had to go home but sadly it has been necessary but we all hope that she pulls through this latest health crisis. But she has been ill for a long time and our good wishes and thoughts are with both of them and it’s an enormous strain for him and we wish him and his wife well.

JOURNALIST:

What your reaction to the Opening Ceremony – it’s very successful from a national point of view?

PRIME MINISTER:

I think it was fantastic. I think Ric Birch and David Atkins deserve the praise of all Australians. It was a very impressive opening ceremony and it was very tight. It was comprehensive and what it demonstrated to the world is the depth of talent that this country has in the arts. It was very creative and I think Ric and David should feel a great deal of pride and they deserve our thanks and our congratulations. So, we’ve got off to a great start.

JOURNALIST:

Cathy Freeman lit the cauldron….(inaudible)… made a statement for reconciliation… how would you describe it?

PRIME MINISTER:

I thought it was a terrific choice and I think the decision to salute Australian women athletes in the last segments was also entirely appropriate. I think, in fact, women have won more medals in the games than men and they deserve an enormous amount of credit and it is a hundred years and I think it was nicely capped off.

Thank you.

Transcript 22891