The Great Hall of the People in Beijing played host to an official dinner and opening ceremony on Tuesday (18), during which the 50th IAAF Congress was declared open by IAAF President Lamine Diack.
Among the 800 distinguished guests who enjoyed a spectacular evening were Liu Peng, Minister of Sports of the People’s Republic of China, and Wang Anshun, the Mayor of Beijing.
Liu presented Diack with the IAAF Golden Order of Merit to mark the end of the president’s 16-year term.
IAAF Council members Robert Hersh, Helmut Digel and Hansjorg Wirz were presented with the IAAF Silver Order of Merit.
Vivian Gungaram, Tigor Tanjung, Karel Pilny, Keith Parker, Naomi Pollum and Lino Ramiro Varela Marmolejo were awarded the IAAF Plaque of Merit.
After the presentations, guests were entertained by performances from opera singers, acrobats, dancers and diabolo artistes.