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Tokyo, Istanbul and Madrid await Olympic 2020 decision [AMBIENT]



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Candidates for the International Olympic Committee spoke in Buenos Aires, Argentina on Wednesday

Olympic leaders began weeklong meetings on Wednesday that will bring a close to Jacques Rogge's 12-year reign as IOC president.

The International Olympic Committee convenes in Buenos Aires to choose a host city for the 2020 Games, elect Rogge's successor and add a sport to the 2020 lineup.

Rogge is chairing his policy-making executive board for the last time, a two-day meeting to review a range of Olympic issues.

During their lunchtime break, the participants took time to watch some Tango dancing and unveil an Olympic rings sculpture in the heart of the Argentine capital.

One of the candidates to replace Rogge, former Olympian Sergei Bubka underlines the significance of the coming days meetings, "It will be a very important decision, for 2020, for presidency, for sport. It is very important when all the family is here."

The view is supported by one of Bubka's rivals, Wu Ching-kuo of Taiwan. "Many decisions need to be made," he told reporters.

The full IOC convenes starting Friday for its 125th session, a landmark meeting that will set the Olympic movement's direction for the next decade.

On Saturday, the 100 or so IOC members will vote by secret ballot on the 2020 host, a three-way contest between Tokyo, Madrid and Istanbul.

After a two-year global campaign, Tokyo is seen as a slight favorite going into the final days of the 2020 race, pushing its case as a "safe pair of hands" at a time of global uncertainty.