UN chief roots for high-flying women in Sochi

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Feb 05 2014 06:53 PM | Updated as of Feb 06 2014 02:53 AM

UNITED NATIONS - UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Tuesday said he was rooting for women who will ski jump at the Sochi Olympics for the first time.

"Of course, you will not see me at the top of the jump. But I will be rooting for women athetes to jump as high and leap as far," said Ban.

He was welcoming to the United Nations former US secretary of state Hillary Clinton and the head of UN Women, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka.

"Sport has a very strong power of uniting people, regardless of gender, ethnicities or sexual orientation and age," said Ban.

"At the same time, it showcases a very good future for women's power," the UN chief added, referring to the fact women will compete for the first time in ski jump in the February 7-23 Games.

"Let's work together to make this world better for all, including women and girls," Ban said.

Ban, who was due to leave Wednesday for the Russian city, will take part in the opening ceremonies.

Clinton, joined by her daughter Chelsea, told Ban that "during your tenure, the role of women, their rights and opportunities have become a critical priority for the United Nations."

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