Olympic flame arrives in Marseille, starts coastal parade

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Olympic flame arrives in Marseille, starts coastal parade

The three-masted ship Belem carrying the Olympic flame arrived in the southern French city of Marseille in the late morning of Wednesday, and kicked off a six-hour coastal parade before the flame finally lands at the old port at around 7:30 p.m., reported Xinhua.

The parade is accompanied by 1,024 local boats, and workshops are organized along the coast to celebrate the arrival.

More than 150,000 spectators are expected to attend the ceremony in the evening and security has been a top priority for authorities in Marseille. About 8,000 police officers have been deployed around the harbor from the afternoon.

"It's an unprecedented level of security," French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said. "Life goes on in Marseille, but in great security conditions."

A series of artistic performances and exhibitions, starting from 5:00 p.m., will follow the parade, before Florent Manaudou, France's 2012 Olympic men's 50m freestyle swimming champion, will bring the Olympic flame to land shortly after 7:30 p.m. in the presence of French President Emmanuel Macron.

"The return of the Games to our country will be a fantastic celebration," said Tony Estanguet, president of Paris 2024.

The welcome ceremony also includes a fantastic show by the Patrouille de France, France's elite air display team.

The Olympic flame for the Paris 2024 Games was lit in Greece on April 16, before it was officially handed to France at the renowned Panathenaic Stadium on April 26.

It left Athens aboard Belem the next morning. Belem was first used in 1896, the same year as the first modern Olympic Games was held in the Greek capital. The boat completed a 12-day voyage before arriving in Marseille, a city founded around 600 BC by Greek settlers from Phocaea.

"We are extremely proud," Mayor of Marseille Benoit Payan said. "This is where it all begins."

The torch relay will start on Thursday with former Marseille football club players, Jean-Pierre Papin, Didier Drogba and Basile Boli, as well as French basketball legend Tony Parker, among the torchbearers.

More than 10,000 people will take part in the torch relay before the flame reaches Paris through iconic places across the country, from Mont-Saint-Michel to D-Day landing beaches in Normandy and the Versailles Palace.

The Olympic cauldron will be lit at the opening ceremony which will be held on the River Seine on July 26.

Source: www.dailyfinland.fi

5 Comments
  1. EmilySmith says

    It’s amazing to see the Olympic flame making its way to Marseille, bringing a sense of unity and excitement to the city. The security measures in place highlight the importance of ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience for all spectators. Looking forward to the spectacular celebrations ahead!

  2. EmilyJohnson says

    It’s amazing to see the Olympic flame making its way to Marseille! The coastal parade sounds like a grand celebration, and the tight security measures definitely reassure the safety of the event. Looking forward to the fantastic show by the Patrouille de France!

  3. EmmaSmith85 says

    As an avid supporter of the Olympics, I am thrilled to see the symbolic arrival of the Olympic flame in Marseille. The coastal parade must be a spectacular sight with the Belem ship leading the way. The meticulous security measures taken by the authorities show their commitment to ensuring a safe and enjoyable event for everyone attending. I look forward to the artistic performances and the moment when the flame will be brought ashore by Florent Manaudou. This is truly a momentous occasion that heralds the upcoming Paris 2024 Games!

  4. Alice_86 says

    It’s amazing to see the Olympic flame making its way through Marseille! The coastal parade must be a breathtaking experience for all the spectators. Security measures seem to be well in place for such a grand event. Looking forward to the fantastic celebration ahead!

  5. AnnaLovesTraveling says

    I am thrilled to see the Olympic flame arriving in Marseille! It’s such a special moment for the city, and the coastal parade sounds like a wonderful celebration. The level of security measures shows the importance of the event for everyone involved. Looking forward to the fantastic show and the presence of President Macron. Let the Olympic spirit shine bright!

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