Tokyo Paralympics declared closed with glittering ceremony: IPC Chief Andrew Parsons

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Tokyo:  International Paralympic Committee Chief Andrew Parsons declared the games closed on a cool night in the Olympic Stadium on Sunday, saying they had not just been historic; they’ve been fantastic, after a glittering ceremony.

Parsons said the Games had opened the door, and it was time for us all to play our part to break down the barriers. During our carnival of sport, we have celebrated difference, exhibited the best of humanity and shown unity in diversity, he said.

Tokyo bid a colourful farewell to the Paralympics on Sunday after 12 days of stereotype defying, record shattering performances despite a year – long Covid – 19 pandemic delay.  It was games like no other and the action did not disappoint when it got underway, with a record 86 teams winning medals and 62 claiming atleast one Gold.

The closing ceremony, without fans due to Covid – 19 fears but with roughly 2,000 athletes and officials in attendance took harmonious cacophony as its theme. Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike handed the Paralympic flag over to Parsons, who passed it on to Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, representing the 2024 hosts.

Parsons then announced the end of the Games, bringing the curtain down after 539 gold medals across 22 sports, contested almost entirely behind closed doors because of the virus. I don’t want to do this, but the time has come for me to declare the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games closed, he said.

China stands top in the medal tally with 207, including 96 Golds, followed by Britain, the United States and the Russian team.

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