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Olympic Flame for PyeongChang Winter Olympics welcomed across Greece

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-10-27 09:11

Olympic Flame for PyeongChang Winter Olympics welcomed across Greece

Greek actress Katerina Lehou, playing the role of High Priestess gives an olive branch to Greek cross country skiing athlete Apostolos Aggelis during the Olympic flame lighting ceremony for the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics, Oct 24, 2017. [Photo/Agencies]

ATHENS - The Olympic Flame burning for the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics was warmly welcomed in western and northern Greece on Thursday, as the Greek leg of the Torch Relay continued.

After the Lighting ceremony on Tuesday at Ancient Olympia, the birthplace of the Olympic Games 25 centuries ago, the Sacred Flame travelled to Patras port, crossed the Rio-Antirio bridge which connects Peloponnese peninsula to the mainland, and stayed in Ioannina city overnight Wednesday before continuing its journey to northern Greece.

Rower Stefanos Douskos, who participated in the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics, lit the cauldron at Ioannina, while Olympic bronze medalist in rowing at the London 2012 Olympics Christina Giazitzidou lit the cauldron at Kastoria lake, her birthplace, coming from the towns of Grevena and Kozani, according to an e-mailed press release by the Hellenic Olympic Committee (HOC).

Thousands of people of all ages and professions flooded central squares and landmarks along the way cheering the torchbearers and waving Greek and South Korean flags in honor of the Games host city as well as flags with the five Olympic Rings.

On the fourth day of the torch relay on Friday the Flame will spread the messages of peace and friendship to the cities of Florina, Edessa, Giannitsa and will end up in Thessaloniki, where, it will stay overnight next to the Statue of Alexander the Great.

The Greek leg of the Relay will cover 2,129 kilometers and the Flame will be carried by 505 torchbearers, according to HOC.

The journey in Greece will end on October 31 at the Panathenaic stadium in Athens where Greeks will pass the Flame to the South Korean organizers of the Winter Olympics which will take place February 9-25.

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