Gerd Kanter is the new chairman of the EOC Athletes' Commission ©Getty Images

The European Olympic Committees' (EOC) new Athletes' Commission was elected in Monaco with Estonia's Gerd Kanter chosen as chairman.

In all, six top athletes for summer sports and two for winter sports were chosen from 18 candidates by an assembly of European competitors. 

"The Monaco Forum has been a fantastic moment to listen to athletes around our continent," said the EOC's Acting President Janez Kocijančič. 

The election was the main order of business at the Forum in Monaco, which was addressed by Prince Albert II, the President of the Monegasque National Olympic Committee.

EOC secretary general Raffaele Pagnozzi welcomed the gender equality reflected in the new Commission.

He added it was "an opportunity to listen to what the future of European sport should be, with active athletes' representation, ready to exchange their experience, to dialogue, and ensure they do their part in the decision-making process, in order to ensure better governance and better ethics".

Discus thrower Kanter was elected to represent athletics and his deputy will be Hungary's Balazs Baji, a 110 metre hurdler.

Hungarian hurdler Balazs Baji will serve as deputy to Gerd Kanter ©Getty Images
Hungarian hurdler Balazs Baji will serve as deputy to Gerd Kanter ©Getty Images

Irish hockey player David Harte will be the secretary of the new body, while other members are Italian diver Tania Cagnotto, Latvian athlete Gunta Latiseva-Cudare, Turkish basketball player Nevriye Yilmaz, Slovakian biathlete Jana Daubnerova and Norwegian cross-country skier Eldar Rønning.

The election of Harte was welcomed by Sarah Keane, the Olympic Council of Ireland's (OCI) President.

"A key focus of the new OCI Board is to ensure that athletes are at the centre of all our decision making and David's election to this important European role will help us all in that endeavour," she said.

The EOC Athletes' Commission represents the active elite athletes of the 50 National Olympic Committees of Europe. 

It is represented at the European Games and European Youth Olympic Festivals, as well as other EOC events.