The 2017 Judo World Championships began in Budapest on Monday, 28 August with a spectacular opening ceremony at the László Papp Sport Arena.

The opening ceremony was attended by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is also Honorary President of the International Judo Federation (IJF), Prime Minister of Hungary Viktor Orbán, and Minister of Defence István Simicskó, who is also one of the events chief patrons.

DownloadPhoto: Tünde Rácz

The Suzuki World Judo Championships, which is regarded as one of the sport’s greatest events, will be held in the Hungarian capital during the course of the upcoming week with the participation of some eight hundred athletes. The Ministry of Defence was also involved in organising and managing the major sports event organised by the Hungarian Judo Federation and the IJF. During the opening ceremony, opera singer Levente Molnár’s rendition of the National Anthem was accompanied by the Hungarian Defence Forces Central Orchestra.

In a statement to the defence website, Minister of Defence Dr. István Simicskó said: “It is extremely important for Hungary to show the world its love of sport, and that it is capable of organising and hosting sports events of such a high standard”. “Sport is a common denominator in the world, through which we can also reinforce our relations, in addition to which sport includes fair play and respect for one’s opponent, and these are all noble characteristics which, if equipped, enable us to practice fair play to a greater extent in life and cooperate with others”, the Minister said.

DownloadPhoto: Tünde Rácz

On the first day of the World Championships, the Minister of Defence presented prize money and official mascots to the medal-winners of the women’s 48 kilogram category competition.