Moscow kaleidoscope

Moscow will have the most up-to-date sports basis by 2012 and meet all the requirements for hosting the 2012 Summer Olympics," Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov said during the Olympic assembly Friday. "We will try to win [the right to hold the Olympics - Ed.], but even if we lose, it will be in obstinate fight," he said.

Moscow has become an official candidate for holding the 2012 Summer Olympic Games. The Olympic assembly voted unanimously for Moscow taking part in the competition for hosting the Olympics and informed the International Olympic Committee about its decision.

Luzhkov stressed that Moscow had great experience in arranging major sports events - the 1980 Olympics, the 1998 World Youth Games, the International Youth Games of the C.I.S. and the Baltic states.

President of the Russian Olympic Committee Leonid Tyagachev is confident that holding the 2012 Olympics in Moscow will give a powerful impetus to development of physical culture and sports in this country. "The Moscow Olympics will be an Olympics for the whole nation," Tyagachev stressed.

The regional Centre of Adaptation of the Military in Odintsovo (Moscow Region) has marked its fifth anniversary. Over these years, the Centre offered psychological assistance to more than 3,500 retired officers. Around 3,000 people passed refresher course there, 2,000 of former military received civil jobs. The Centre staffers held 76 seminars in garrisons, developed five programmes for social adaptation, which were implemented on nine enterprises established by former military servicemen.

In the early 1990s, the Odintsovo Centre of Adaptation of the Military retired due to redundancies in the Russian Armed Forces was one of the five Russian centres similar to those in other ex-Eastern bloc countries. It has three psychologists, a computer class, offered courses of accounting and management. Similar centres operated in Smolensk, Nizhny Novgorod, Kaliningrad and Znamensk.

A traditional charity festival for orphans was held yesterday at the Russian Information Agency Novosti with children from Moscow, Taganrog, Yekaterinburg and other cities participating.

The children sang and danced, recited and performed various sketches.

Some of them sang in Swedish. Every year, 500 Russian orphans go to Sweden for summer holidays to live in families, learn the country's traditions and its language. "The Swedish parents" do not forget their Russian children - twice a year they come to Russia with presents.

According to Natalya Korolyova, the Russian co-ordinator of the project, the charity initiative is held within the framework of the Children of Russia presidential programme, sponsored by RIA Novosti and the Swedish royal family.

Thanks to close and fruitful co-operation, some former children's home pupils became members of diplomatic missions to Sweden or staffers of major Swedish firms.

According to Korolyova, such forms of assistance to orphans "expand their outlook, make them open to the world and develop them intellectually."

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