HAVANA (AP)— Long-shot Cuba will take on New York, Madrid and Leipzig, Germany for the right to host the 2012 Olympic Games.
The Cuban Olympic Committee emphasized its country’s strong amateur sports program Monday in announcing it would submit its bid for the Olympics on May 5.
“Cuba has sufficient athletic merits to be the capital selected,” Jose Ramon Fernandez, president of the Cuban Olympic Committee, told a news conference. “The priority should be athletic merits, not a nation’s wealth, or sponsors, or television” rights.
Cash-strapped communist Cuba traditionally has opposed the commercialization of sports.
Other candidates for the games are possibly Moscow, Paris, London and either Rio de Janeiro or Sao Paulo.
The deadline for bids is July.
The host will be selected in 2005.