Olympic Flame for Singapore 2010 Youth Olympics lit in Olympia

10:05, July 24, 2010      

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The sacred Olympic flame for the first Youth Olympic Games to be hosted by Singapore this summer, was ignited on Friday in a flawless ritual ceremony held at the Hera Temple of Ancient Olympia.


High Priestess player Oni Menegaki (front, L) hands over the Flame to Greek torchbearer Apostolos Koutavas during the flame lighting ceremony for the Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games in Ancient Olympia, Greece, July 23, 2010. The Youth Olympic Flame was lit for the first time today in the birthplace of the Olympic Games, signalling the start of a round-the-world journey, begining from Berlin, and then Dakar, Mexico city, Auckland, Seoul and Singapore. (Xinhua/Yu Yang)

On 11:36 am local time, High Priestess Ino Menegaki lit the flame out of a concave mirror, among the ruins of the ancient stadium where the first Olympic Games were organized 23 centuries ago.

"Apollo, King of the sun, and the Idea of light, send your rays and light the sacred torch," said Menegaki, "praying" to the God of the Sun in Greek mythology.

Then the flame was transported in a replica of an ancient urn to the ancient Stadium where after a dance performance by actresses playing the roles of priestesses, the High Priestess lit the torch with the Olympic Flame and handed it over to the first torchbearer, Apostolos Koutavas.

Then, 15-year-old Greek trampoline athlete Koutavas, who will be among the young athletes competing in Singapore, passed the Flame to Xiang Qi Amanda Lim from Singapore, kicking off the international torch relay that will cross five cities in the five continents - Berlin, Dakar, Mexico City, Auckland and Seoul.


Greek Olympic Committee President Spyros Capralos (1st R) hands over an Olympic torch to Singapore Youth Olympic Games Organising Committee chairman Ser Miang NG (2nd R) during the flame lighting ceremony for the Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games in Ancient Olympia, Greece, July 23, 2010. The Youth Olympic Flame was lit for the first time today in the birthplace of the Olympic Games, signalling the start of a round-the-world journey, begining from Berlin, and then Dakar, Mexico city, Auckland, Seoul and Singapore. (Xinhua/Yu Yang)

This year the International Olympic Committee (IOC) decided that torch relays from now will be held only in the host cities of the Games.

The sacred flame will burn for the 2010 Singapore Youth Olympics to be held from August 14 to 26.

The Olympic Flame will spread the message of peace among peoples of the world, as it was stressed in the speeches of dignitaries addressing the event at Olympia, before the lighting of the sacred Flame.

"Youth's passion burns inside this Flame. Young athletes will show that each one of us can contribute to a better world," said International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge.

"Our vision is to inspire youth across the globe to take part in the Olympic movement and promote the Olympic ideals. We hope the first Youth Olympics will inspire more young people. We call upon all citizens of the world to participate in this historical Games," added head of the Organizing Committee of the 2010 Singapore Youth Olympics, Ser Miang Ng.


Safety lantern is lit as the Singapore Youth Olympic Games Organising Committee chairman Ser Miang NG (R) holds the torch during the flame lighting ceremony for the Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games in Ancient Olympia, Greece, July 23, 2010. The Youth Olympic Flame was lit for the first time today in the birthplace of the Olympic Games, signalling the start of a round-the-world journey, begining from Berlin, and then Dakar, Mexico city, Auckland, Seoul and Singapore. (Xinhua/Yu Yang)

Mayor of Ancient Olympia Georgios Aidonis, President of the Greek Olympic Committee Spyros Kapralos as well as Head of the Olympic Torch Committee Spyros Zannias, who also gave speeches during the Lighting ceremony, wished the best for the first Youth Olympic Games expressing hope that will connect the youth of the world to the Olympic movement.

Source: Xinhua

(Editor:张心意)

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