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    PARIS, France, Dec. 8, 2018-The International Fencing Federation (FIE) has completed its annual Congress meeting in Paris, France, accomplishing multiple decisions and procedures as part of its official charter. The Congress, which took place at the Paris "Pavillon d'Armenonville", had 135 federations present or represented, as well as FIE Commissions and Councils, members of the Executive Committee and members of Honour. In addition to this year's Congress, the FIE is also celebrating its 105th anniversary.

    The theme of the 2018 Congress is "Fencing is our Future". FIE President Alisher Usmanov said, "We have many achievements to be proud of. We have ensured that all 12 fencing disciplines will be part of the Olympic program. I consider it to be one of the most important points in the history of fencing. The organization of our major tournaments has significantly improved. We are in constant search of new ways of promoting our sport and have made great progress in this respect: testing and introducing state-of-the-art technology; improving the quality and increasing the number of television broadcasts of our competitions, and millions of people all over the world can now watch fencing."

    At this year's Congress, the FIE ratified one new federation as a member, bringing the total number to 153. The newest nation member of the FIE world fencing family is the federation of American Samoa.

    World Championship Hosts. As part of its annual Congress proceedings, several countries bid to host FIE world championship events. At this year's Congress, the following countries have been approved for the 2021 championships: *Cairo, Egypt has been voted to host the Junior and Cadet Fencing World Championships *Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA has been voted to host the Veteran Fencing World Championships

    World Rankings. Each team and individual winner for the top-level world junior and senior rankings in epee, foil and sabre as well as overall nations are awarded at the Congress. This year's recipients of awards include the following:

    Epee Senior Team: USA (women), Korea (men) Senior Individual: Mara Navarria (ITA), Yannick Borel (FRA) Junior Team: Italy (women), Hungary (men) Junior Individual: Federica Isola (ITA), Jakub Jurka (CZE) Foil Senior Team: Italy (women), USA (men) Senior Individual: Inna Deriglazova (RUS), Alessio Foconi (ITA) Junior Team: USA (women), France (men) Junior Individual: Martina Favaretto (ITA), Tommaso Marini (ITA) Sabre Senior Team: France (women), Korea (men) Senior Individual: Olga Kharlan (UKR), Eli Dershwitz (USA) Junior Team: Russia (women), Italy (men) Junior Individual: Liza Pusztai (HUN), Konstantin Lokhanov (RUS) Nations Grand Prix Seniors: Italy Juniors: Italy

    Fair Play Award. Based on the proposal of the FIE Fair Play Council, the FIE Executive Committee awards the Fair Play trophy to one or several individuals in world fencing who exhibited a significant act of fair play during the year. For 2018, the award was given to Christian Bauer (FRA), Marco Fichera (ITA) and Katharine Holmes (USA).

    The list of decisions of the 2018 FIE Annual Congress will be made available on the FIE Web site.