Damascus: Syria intends to participate in Winter Olympic Games for the first time in its history and is currently looking for Syrian athletes living abroad who could represent the country at the competition, President of the Syrian Olympic Committee Mowaffak Joumaa said.
"We are planing to encourage Syrians living abroad, particularly in Europe, to participate in the Winter Olympics under the Syrian flag. So far, we have not succeeded in our searches, but we continue to work to that end," Joumaa said.The president of the committee noted that Syria also intended to raise the popularity of winter sports in the country despite its warm climate.
"We do not have a cold enough climate to develop these sports, but the Syrian Olympic Committee still plans to expand its work aimed at promoting winter sports [in Syria]," Joumaa added.
Joumaa also said that local authorities were planning to complete the postwar rebuilding of major sports complexes in the western provinces of Latakia and Aleppo next year.
"After the government forces liberated the provinces [of Latakia and Aleppo] from militants, we started rebuilding sports infrastructure there. We understand that the most important thing now is to rebuild schools and hospitals; however, restoring the largest sports facilities in the country in Latakia and Aleppo is among our goals for 2019," the president of the committee said.