2008 torch to scale highest mountain
By Lei Lei (China Daily)
Updated: 2006-02-11 06:24
TURIN, Italy: The Beijing 2008 Olympic torch relay will travel across all
continents of the world and scale the top of Mount Quomolangma (known in the
west as Everest), the world's highest mountain, the Games chief organizer said
The torch relay route will cover 28
foreign cities on the five continents, and 70 cities in China, said Liu Qi,
president of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games of the XXIX Olympiad
Emblem of the Beijing
"The torch will go to the top of Mount Quomolangma," he told the 118th
session of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in Turin, where the Winter
Olympics are currently taking place. "This has never been done before."
He did not say from which side of the mountain the Chinese side or Nepalese
the torch will be carried to the top.
The 145-day relay will take place from March 21, 2008, to August 8, the day
when the Games opens. About 15,000 people from all over the world will
participate in the relay.
"The slogan of the Beijing Games One World, One Dream will also be the theme
of the torch relay," said Liu. "Through the torch relay, we hope to promote the
Olympic spirit of peace, friendship and progress globally and send the good
wishes of Chinese people to the whole world."
The IOC has approved in principle China's torch relay plan.
BOCOG will set up a torch relay team and make contact with other Olympic
committees on the proposed torch route this year.
"We will unveil the final route in 2007," Liu added.
Liu and other officials with BOCOG also briefed IOC members on Beijing's
ongoing preparations for the Games, covering everything from transport to
IOC officials were generally effusive in their praise.
"We have no doubt that BOCOG will deliver in a splendid way," IOC President
Jacques Rogge said after Beijing's presentation.
As for the preparatory work this year, officials said BOCOG will speed up the
constructions of the venues and complete the main structures by the end of the
"We will test some of the venues through some events to be held in China this
year," said Jiang Xiaoyu, executive vice-president of BOCOG.
The Softball World Championships and World Junior Athletics Championships
will be held in Beijing this August, and the Sailing World Championships will be
held in Qingdao, the co-host city of the Beijing 2008 Games.
To learn from other Games hosts, BOCOG has sent about 200 staff members to
Turin to see the opening and closing ceremonies of the Winter Olympics.
Thirteen BOCOG members are already working as trainees for a 12-week period
that ends this month in nine departments of the Turin Organizing Committee and
the Turin Olympic Broadcasting Organization.
Agencies contributed to this story
(China Daily 02/11/2006 page1)