Tokyo Olympic Torch 2020

The flame for this summer’s Tokyo Olympics will pass by historic landmarks in Greece over a period of eight days before it is handed over to Japan.

The announcement was made on Monday by Greece’s Olympic Committee, who added that the flame will visit World Heritage sites and major landmarks, including the Acropolis in Athens and the city of Thessaloniki.

The official lighting of the flame will take place on March 12 at Ancient Olympia, in the Peloponnese, with Greek actress Xantho Georgiou being announced as the high priestess.

Approximately 600 torchbearers will carry the flame before it is handed over to the Tokyo organising committee officials on March 19 at a ceremony at the Panathenaic Stadium in Athens, which staged the first modern Olympics in 1896.

Greek Olympic shooting champion Anna Korakaki, who is the first woman to serve as the first torchbearer in games history, will start the torch relay. She will then pass the flame to Mizuki Noguchi, the winner of the women’s marathon at the 2004 Athens Games.

The Japanese leg of the relay will begin on March 26 from the northeastern Tohoku region, which was widely affected by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami which killed nearly 16,000 people.

The flame will visit all 47 Japanese prefectures before making its entrance at the opening ceremony, to be held at Tokyo’s National Stadium on July 24.

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