By Duncan Mackay at the CONI Headquarters in Rome

Gianni Alemanno head and shouldersDecember 7 - It was a mistake for Rome's bid to host the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics to be abandoned but they will try again for 2024, the city's Mayor promised here today.

Gianni Alemanno (pictured) made his comments at the opening session of the 41st European Olympic Committees General Assembly. 

The Italian capital withdrew its bid on the eve of having to deliver financial guarantees to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) after the Government of Prime Minister Mario Monti decided not to back the bid because of Italy's economic crisis.

The decision was angrily denounced by Mario Pescante, Italy's most senior Olympic official who resigned as a vice-president of the IOC because he felt they had let the Movement down.

"This is a city with an Olympic tradition," said Alemanno as he addressed 49 members of the EOC who have gathered here for its annual meeting at the offices of Italy's Olympic Committee (CONI) in the shadow of the Olympic Stadium, which hosted the 1960 Games.

"We presented our candidature for 2020 but due to political reasons, erroneously in my opinion, decided to withdraw.

"But we will persevere and try again in 2024.

"We are a very proud city and believe in this event."

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