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Olympic torch relay braves rain near Athens

Updated: 2012-05-16 13:20

ATHENS - The Olympic Flame Torch Relay for the 2012 London Games continued its trip across Greece on Tuesday, braving rain, as it nears Athens for the handing over ceremony on Thursday.

On the sixth day of the Relay, torchbearers reached with the sacred light the city of Lamia, some 200 kilometers north of the Greek capital, spreading the values of Olympism, friendship, respect and excellence.

Tuesday's route had started from the city of Drama in northern Greece, passing from towns and villages where crowds welcomed it with joy. Greek actor Yorgos Kapountzidis, presenter of the opening ceremony in the Special Olympics hosted in Athens last summer, was amongst torchbearers at the city of Serres.

Braving heavy rainfall, young students and locals embraced torchbearers and the sacred flame at the city of Katerini.

In Larissa, Greek athlete Olga Gantzoudi lit the cauldron inside the ancient theatre of the town, while at the port of Volos, the Olympic flame was carried across the city by volunteers who have contributed to the local community.

On Wednesday, after an overnight stop at Lamia, the Torch Relay will resume, heading for Piraeus and Athens, where in late afternoon it is expected to reach the sacred Acropolis hill to send the world the message of peace in front of the Parthenon ancient temple.

On May 17 during a ceremony at Panathinaikon stadium, where the first modern Olympics were conducted over a century ago, the flame will be handed over to the British delegation to transfer it to the United Kingdom.

The sacred light for the London Games was lit on May 10 at Olympia, where the Olympics were born 25 centuries ago.

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