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Budapest Municipality Has No Competence in Hosting World Athletics Championship, says federation

MTI-Hungary Today 2021.09.01.

As the municipality of Budapest is not a signatory to the agreement on the capital city’s hosting the World Athletics Championships in 2023, it has no competence in taking decisions concerning the event, the Hungarian Athletics Federation (MASZ) said on Tuesday.

MASZ issued a statement in response to Budapest Mayor Gergely Karácsony announcing last week that he would propose to the general assembly’s meeting this week to withdraw its approval for the city to host the 2023 event. The mayor argued that by passing a law on China’s Fudan University, the government had violated a 2019 agreement which included, among other things, Budapest’s approval for the world athletics championships. The government considers setting up Fudan University in Budapest to be more important than building a student city which provides affordable housing for students from outside the city, Karácsony said.

In its statement, MASZ said that “only a member of the international athletics federation is entitled to submit a bid for hosting championships”.

“Accordingly, it was MASZ that applied for and won the right to organize the 2023 World Athletics Championships with the support of the Hungarian government,” the federation said, adding that the government had guaranteed covering the costs of the organization.

Budapest Mayor's Plan to Veto Hosting of 2023 World Athletics Championships Generates Outcry
Budapest Mayor's Plan to Veto Hosting of 2023 World Athletics Championships Generates Outcry

The news has not only provoked reactions from the government, the athletics federation, and athletes, but has reportedly even caused serious tensions inside the local joint opposition party alliance.Continue reading

“Since the municipality of Budapest will not participate in organizing the 2023 championships, it is not a contracting party, and as such does not have any tasks or any expenses to cover in connection with the event,” MASZ said.

Featured photo illustration by Tamás Vasvári/MTI