The Mediterranean Games, celebrated every four years, constitute for the countries of the Mediterranean Basin the most important multidisciplinary sporting event after the Olympic Games.
To this end, they bring together the sports delegations of the Mediterranean National Olympic Committees, members of the ICMG in more than 25 sports disciplines.
The Mediterranean basin is the meeting place of three continents Africa, Asia and Europe. It is the birthplace of the three great monotheistic religions. It is also the cradle of the Olympic Games… But unfortunately it is a region regularly shaken by turbulence and conflicts with dramatic effects on the populations.
However, despite all the problems, particularly political ones that the region has known, the Mediterranean Games have always taken place on the dates planned and in the chosen place, bringing together young athletes from Mediterranean countries in a friendly atmosphere conducive to strengthening the links of friendship and solidarity, despite differences in culture, religion and languages.
The idea of organizing the Games for the Mediterranean countries came from the President of the Egyptian NOC and Vice-President of the IOC, Mohamed TAHER PACHA with the help of the Greek Ioannis KETSEAS, also a member of the IOC During the 1948 Olympic Games in London, in a period darkened by tensions between great powers, he presented the project to the members of the IOC, supporting the idea of a pacifying, unifying sport.
The first Mediterranean Games were organized in Alexandria in 1951. The Games have more than half a century of existence and are in their 18th edition. The table below makes it possible to note:
The increase in the number of participating countries as the editions progress, leading to a substantial increase in the number of athletes
The advent of female participation from 1967 in Tunis
A variation in the periodicity in 1993 with the organization of the Games in France only 2 years after those in Athens in 1991. In fact, due to the density of the international sports calendar in the pre-Olympic year, most of the NOCs wanted this event to take place the year following the Olympic Games to enable the new Olympic teams to be prepared.
A balanced alternation in the organization between the northern and southern shores of the Mediterranean, at least until the 2001 edition.