Live Phuket The Phuket News The Phuket News Kata Rocks The Phuket News
The Phuket News World Sport
The Phuket News Phuket | Thailand | World  | Surf Report  | Predictions XML, RSS, Feed
The Phuket News The Phuket News
The Phuket News

Glittering ceremony launches Rio Games

OLYMPICS: Fireworks and laser-lit choreography launched the Rio Games this morning (Aug 6) as Brazil sought to forget seven years of troubled preparations and the Olympic movement temporarily put aside its doping crisis.


AFP

Saturday 6 August 2016, 09:31AM


This picture shows an overview during the opening ceremony of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro. Photo: François-Xavier Marit/AFP
This picture shows an overview during the opening ceremony of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro. Photo: François-Xavier Marit/AFP

Under the gaze of Rio’s Christ the Redeemer statue, 78,000 people packed into the Maracana Stadium to watch the four-hour party with Michael Phelps and other sporting superstars taking centre-stage in South America’s first Olympics.

Brazilian singer Paulinho da Viola sang the national anthem to set off the show of laser lights and elaborate dances highlighting Brazil’s history and rise as an emerging power.

Supermodel Gisele Bundchen strutted into the arena to the iconic “Girl From Ipanema” before Greece, home of the ancient Olympics, took its traditional place at the head of the athletes’ parade.

France’s President Francois Hollande and Argentina’s Mauricio Macri were among a handful of state leaders in the VIP box with Brazil’s troubled interim leader Michel Temer.

Organisers said the ceremony aimed to send a message of tolerance and respect. But it came as Brazil battles a crippling recession, double-digit unemployment and rising crime, and as Temer fights off political turmoil.

As the clock ticked down to the start of the ceremony, thousands of demonstrators took to the streets to vent their fury at Brazil’s rulers and the multi-billion-dollar cost of the Games.

Waving signs reading “No to the Olympics!”, about 3,000 people gathered outside the luxury Copacabana Palace Hotel where many Olympic athletes are staying.

Brazil has spent more than $10 billion on new infrastructure and preparing for the Games at a time of economic crisis.

The billions lavished on the Games has angered many Brazilians as the country grapples with a tanking economy and mass social problems.

“This party wasn’t done for the people. The Games don’t come close to the reality lived by the poor. So I’m protesting against the lack of finances for our schools and for the way our salaries are only paid in installments,” said teacher Guilherme Moreira Dias, 38.

IPC Satree Phuket School

The ceremony launches 17 days of sporting drama led by a cast of elite athletes including sprint king Usain Bolt and swimming superstar Phelps which wraps up on August 21.

As well as economic problems, Brazil is also in the grip of a political crisis which led to the impeachment of President Dilma Rousseff. She refused to attend the ceremony, leaving Temer in her place with a hostile reception from the crowd predicted.

A vast security blanket of 85,000 military and police – twice the number on duty at the 2012 London Games – will be draped over the city to ward off the threat of street crime and terror attacks.

That has not been able to offer total protection, with a spate of thefts from the athletes’ village. The Danish, Chinese and Australian delegations have all reported items stolen. Journalists’ cameras and laptops have also been targeted for thefts.

Anticipation for the sporting battles has been eclipsed by fallout from the Russian doping scandal that has caused a rift between the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the World Anti-Doping Agency.

The IOC’s decision not to impose a blanket ban on Russia over revelations of a state-sponsored doping program opened the door to legal turmoil which left the precise make-up of the Russian team in limbo.

On Thursday (Aug 4), the IOC confirmed the Russian team would be made up of 271 athletes, with 118 eliminated because of the drug scandal.

The first gold medal will be awarded today in shooting and all eyes will be on American swimming star Phelps, the most decorated Olympian in history, when he returns to the pool in the first week.

Track and field will see Jamaican star Bolt aim to defend his 100m, 200m and 4x100m crowns by clinching all three for the third straight Games.

Gymnastics, meanwhile, could see the world find a new darling in America’s teenage star Simone Biles, while rugby and golf return to the Olympic programme after gaps of 92 years and 112 years respectively.

 

 

The Phuket News
The Phuket News
Comment on this story
* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.
Comments Here:
Username:
Password:
E-mail:
CAPTCHA
Forget your password?

Be the first to comment.

The Phuket News
The Phuket News The Phuket News The Phuket News
The Phuket News
Share this
The Phuket News
Have a news tip-off? Click here
The Phuket News
Related stories
The Phuket News
Phuket community

Recent Comments


Double hit-and-run leaves one dead, one injured in Phuket

What you say's true Kurt. If kids learn at a young age they can be affected in the right way - to take care when they do learn to drive. Sometimes...(Read More)


Outward bound: British Ambassador sheds light on UK’s post-Brexit future

Christy...it's not surprising that your comment conforms exactly to what I said, "This is the major failing of analysis poor comments." ...(Read More)


Phuket motorbike mechanic, 28, nabbed with meth haul, Facebook handguns

Wow, is now facebook the bad boy? Can we buy guns in Facebook with delivery at home in Thailand? That sounds not so pleasant! But we are not surp...(Read More)


Double hit-and-run leaves one dead, one injured in Phuket

malczx7r. I guess you mean to say,.. get thai school boys and girls go to Phuket hospitals to see the effect of head injuries. Right? I am sure Ch...(Read More)


Body in freezer ‘likely east European’

Believe ( what is that?) of southern part of east Europe? Why not mention straight away: Greece? All this authorities 'cloudy believes' co...(Read More)


Outward bound: British Ambassador sheds light on UK’s post-Brexit future

Only Thai women masters of gold diggers? I guess no man has ever been took to the cleaners from a caucasian woman then? Not all women are the same, h...(Read More)


Double hit-and-run leaves one dead, one injured in Phuket

Christy Sweet, go to a hospital and see the effect of head injuries to motorcyclists before you say it has no affect on safety, as for a nice little e...(Read More)


Man jailed 18 months for cruelty to cats

Yup, many thai got to much led poisoning when they were/are kids because of the smog/fumes produced by cars, busses, trucks. And don't forget abo...(Read More)


Plan to track tourists via SIM cards teeters

Yes, the 'Registration for Owner of Residence form' has been limited to just 5 questions. Two addresses only of yourself ( local + foreign) , ...(Read More)


Phang Nga police officer charged with drunk driving

The bail of this road criminal is very little. Just about a 1 month salary. A joke! Wonder or he even has to fork it up himself. Yes, Local vill...(Read More)

The Phuket News
The Phuket News
Bangkok Hospital Phuket
THAI VISA
PHUKET NEWS
Phuket
Thailand
World
Business
Q A
Weird World
ARCHIVE
POLL
CURRENCY
WEATHER
PHUKET TIDE TABLE
The Phuket News PHUKET LIFE
Phuket Arts
Phuket Community
Phuket Culture
Phuket Dining
Phuket Education
Phuket Entertainment
Phuket Environment
Phuket Health
Phuket People
Phuket Travel
Photo Galleries
COLOURING BOOK
The Phuket News PHUKET SPORT
Phuket
Thailand
World
SURF REPORT
PREDICTIONS
The Phuket News PHUKET CLASSIFIEDS
Phuket Buy and Sell
Phuket Jobs
Phuket Property
Phuket Cars and Boats
Phuket Community
Phuket Services
SEARCH CLASSIFIEDS
POST CLASSIFIED
The Phuket News The Phuket News PHUKET EVENTS
Phuket Event listings
Phuket Event calendar
Buy Tickets
POST EVENT
The Phuket News PHUKET DIRECTORY
Phuket Bars, pubs and clubs
Phuket Hotels and villas
Phuket Restaurants
Phuket Yellow Pages
POST LISTING
The Phuket News BARGAINS
The Phuket News ABOUT US
The Company
Distribution points
Subscribe
Advertise with us
Pay for advert
Contact us
CONTESTS
Content Google Map
Site map
Australian Visa Services
 
Currency - The Phuket News   Weather Report - The Phuket News   Surf Report - The Phuket News
LinkedIn - The Phuket News   Twitter - The Phuket News   YouTube - The Phuket News   Facebook - The Phuket News
Copyright © 2016 Class Act Media. All rights reserved. | Website usage terms and conditions | Privacy and Confidentiality Statement.