European Athletics Diary: Svein Arne Hansen was re-elected unopposed as the European Athletics President for the next four years from 2019 to 2023 at the 26th European Athletics Congress in Prague on Saturday.

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European Athletics continues to grow and make some impressive moves that bode well for the future of the sport in Europe. The re-election of Sven Arne Hansen as President of EAA is a good omen.

Hansen_SvenArne-EuroXC18.jpgSven Arne Hansen, photo by PhotoRun.net

Svein Arne Hansen was re-elected unopposed as the European Athletics President for the next four years from 2019 to 2023 at the 26th European Athletics Congress in Prague on Saturday.

"Thank you, I am very gratified that you (the European Athletics Member Federations) have put your confidence in me for another four years; but I am not European Athletics, you are," Hansen told representative of the 50 Member Federations gathered in the Czech capital.

The three Vice Presidents elected were Cherry Alexander (GBR), Dobromir Karamarinov (BUL) and Libor Varhanik (CZE).

To ensure a gender balance, for the first time ever there was a requirement of at least one man and woman to be elected as a European Athletics Vice President.

Alexander becomes just the second European Athletics' female Vice President in its 49-year history following on from Austria's Erika Strasser, who was Vice President between 1991-95. "It is a historic day," commented Hansen.

In addition, 13 Council Members were elected in Prague with a minimum of three women required to be elected.

The following were elected: Slobodan Brankovic (SRB), Nadya But-Husaim (BLR), Raul Chapado (ESP), Fatih Cintimar (TUR), Jean Gracia (FRA), Karin Grute Movin (SWE), Marton Gyulai (HUN), Frank Hensel, (GER), Anna Kirnova (SVK), Dimakos Panagiotis (GRE), Antti Pihlakoski (FIN), Sonja Spendelhofer (AUT), Erich Teigamägi (EST).

With the election of But-Husaim, Grute Movin, Kirnova and Spendelhofer, in addition to Alexander, for the first time ever European Athletics will have five women on its Council.

The Congress opened with a welcome message from the IAAF President Sebastian Coe, who paid tribute to the work done by European Athletics and Hansen from 2015 to the present day.

"You have made the reforms that we have made to our sport in recent years come to life. I have particular gratitude to the man you elected four years ago as your President, he has been a strong and steady compass," said Coe.

In additional to the elections, the Congress also approved the financial reports for 2017 and 2018 as well the financial plan for 2020-23.

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