The Olympic flame was lit at the traditional ceremony in Olympia

The Greek Stéfanos Duskos and the Frenchwoman Laure Manaudou were the first in charge of carrying the torch, who after 10 days in Greece will travel to Marseille to begin the tour until on July 26, in Paris, the pebetero is lit. “The Olympic Games are the only event that brings together the entire world in peaceful competition,” said Thomas Bach.

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Greek actress Mary Miná was responsible for lighting the Olympic flame. Paris 2024 credit.
Greek actress Mary Miná was responsible for lighting the Olympic flame. Paris 2024 credit.

Less than three months before the start of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, the Olympic flame was ignited in the traditional ceremony that takes place at the ruins of ancient Olympia.

The lighting of the torch has been going on at this historic site since 1936 and the ceremony seeks to establish a link between the Ancient Games, which began in Olympia in 776 BC, and the Modern Games.

God of the sun and of the ideal of light, you sent your rays and ignited the sacred flame for the hospitable city of Paris,” said Greek actress Mary Miná, who in her role as the High Priestess of Olympia was responsible for lighting the flame

“The Olympic Games are the only event that brings together the entire world in peaceful competition. Olympic athletes send this powerful message: yes, it is possible to compete fiercely with each other and at the same time live together in peace under one roof. The athletes will shine and show us what greatness humans are capable of with all their excellence, determination and resilience,” said Thomas Bach, president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

“This power of sport will make the Paris 2024 Olympic Games a great symbol of human excellence and the unity of all humanity in all our diversity. These expectations are shared by billions of people around the world. In these difficult times that we are living in, with wars and conflicts on the rise, people are sick of all the hatred, aggression and negative news they face day in and day out. In their hearts, in all our hearts, we long for something that unites us. We long for something that unifies us. We long for something that will give us hope,” added the IOC president.

Another of those present at the ceremony was the president of the Paris 2024 Organizing Committee, Tony Estanguet, who stated that “France is ready to host the Olympic Games, 100 years after the last summer edition on our soil. It is with great pride and honor that we will host the Olympic Games in the country of their founder, Pierre de Coubertin, where we maintain a very strong and special bond with Olympism.”

The Greek Stéfanos Duskos, Olympic rowing champion at the Tokyo 2020 Games, received the Miná torch and drove it to the monument to Pierre de Coubertin, founder of the modern Olympic Games, where it was picked up by the French swimmer Laure Manaudou, three-time medalist in the 2004 Athens Games (she was champion in the 400 freestyle).

The Olympic torch will cross Greece for the next 10 days until the fire hits the Panathinaic Stadium in Athens on April 26, the site of the first Games in 1896. The next day, he will depart from Piraeus port on the Belem three-mast sailboat to Marseille.

On May 8, the torch will begin its journey from Marseille until it reaches Paris on July 26 to light the pot, which could be located in the Tuileries Garden, on the banks of the Seine and between Place de la Concorde and the Louvre.

“This Olympic flame will carry this Olympic spirit from here, our ancient roots, across France and finally to Paris, making the City of Light shine even brighter. These Olympic Games will be younger, more inclusive, more urban, more sustainable. These will be the first with full gender parity, because the IOC allocated exactly 50 percent of the places to female and male athletes,” Bach concluded.