2012 London Games Represent Major Step Forward for Women Olympians
For the first time in the history of the Olympic Games, every competing country will be sending female contestants. It's a landmark victory for women's rights around the world, and it's a huge step in the right direction.
According to the AP, IOC President Jacques Rogge spoke to reporters, saying:
With Saudi Arabian female athletes now joining their fellow female competitors from Qatar and Brunei, it means that by London 2012 every national Olympic committee will have sent women to the Olympic Games.
The two female Saudi athletes that will be competing in London are Wodjan Ali Seraj Abdulrahim Shahrkhani (judo) and Sarah Attar (800-meter runner).
Attar gave a statement from her training base in San Diego, according to the AP report, saying:
A big inspiration for participating in the Olympic Games is being one of the first women for Saudi Arabia to be going. It's such a huge honor and I hope that it can really make some big strides for women over there to get more involved in sport.
It's crazy to think that it took this long to make this happen, but this landmark announcement is something that will make the 2012 Summer Games one to cherish for oppressed women around the world.
Obviously, two women doesn't make a formidable team, but at least this gets the ball rolling in the right direction. Hopefully, by the time 2016 rolls around we'll have a full array of women coming from Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Brunei and any other nation that has previously been opposed to sending women to the Olympic Games.
For now, let's just bask in the glory of the moment and wish Shahrkhani and Attar good luck in their efforts to make their country and their families proud.
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