Olympic Flame Arrives in Buenos Aires

Olympic Flame Arrives in Buenos Aires

Liu Jingmin (Front, C), the executive vice president of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the 2008 Olympic Games (BOCOG), shows the lantern which holds the Olympic flame with Chinese Ambassador to Argentina Zeng Gang(R) and Argentine Olympic Committee (COA) vice president Alicia Masoni de Morea at the Ezeiza international airport, on the outskirts of Buenos Aires, capital of Argentina, April 10, 2008. Buenos Aires is the seventh leg of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games torch relay global tour outside the Chinese mainland. [Photo: Xinhua]

The Beijing Olympic flame arrived in the Argentine capital of Buenos Aires at 5:00pm Thursday (4:00am Friday, Beijing Time) for the 7th leg of the worldwide Olympic torch relay.

Starting at 1:30pm Friday, eighty torch bearers will take part in the city torch run, the only South American stop for the Olympic flame.

The route begins at a River Plate canal district where yachts bob at anchor, goes past the pink presidential palace and down one of the world's widest avenues -- Boulevard 9 de Julio -- and then winds through leafy parks to an equestrian club, according to agencies.

The retired football legend Diego Maradona will likely be the first runner in the 15-kilometer relay course that includes an over water segment, followed by five Chinese nationals, including the Chinese ambassador to Argentina Zeng Gang.

The municipal sports undersecretary Francisco Irarrazabal said earlier that all preparations are complete for the torch relay.

A China News Service reports that 2,700 policemen will be mobilized along the relay route.

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