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Monday, June 20, 2011

The Symbol Of Peace & Freedom Among Open Water Swimmers

Under the leadership of Colonel Nejib Belhedi of Tunisia, Gary Foote and a host of accomplished open water swimmers released a dove in front of the United Nations as part of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame ceremonies and Global Open Water Swimming Conference.

"The dove was released as a symbol of peace and congratulations to Tunisia. Open water swimming has been celebrated and practiced in Tunisia since 1991 where the Tunisian Army organized the first crossing at Kerkennah-Sfax.

Since that time, swimmers as myself have been supported in a number of open water challenges. I take the opportunity to thank and congratulate the Tunisian Army that is celebrating its 55th anniversary.

We are hopeful that the future will be even brighter for open water swimming throughout the Maghreb countries
," explained Colonel Belhedi.

Anne Marie Ward of Ireland, the World Open Water Swimming Women of the Year, Tom Ball and Dr. John Chung of the Ventura Deep Six, and Captain Tim Johnson, the world's foremost expert on currents and tides on swimmers, helped release the dove to the delight of the global group of swimmers.

"We are developing and promoting open water swimming throughout the Maghreb (المغرب العربي) - the western region of North Africa that includes Morocco, Western Sahara, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, and Mauritania)," said Colonel Belhedi.

"The appeal and integration of the open water swimming culture in the educational system for young children is so beneficial. We celebrate the efforts of Doctor Mohamed Aloulou, the new Minister of Sport for Tunisia for his encouragement of open water swimming for youths and job creation through entrepreneurial efforts related to open water swimming. We plan to similarly release a white pigeon in Taparura Shore as an example of a friendship bridge between our open water swimming friends at the United Nations in New York and their colleagues in Tunisia at Kerkennah-Sfax."

Photos courtesy of Mike Lewis.

Copyright © 2011 by Open Water Source

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