Sochi Olympics kick off with grand opening

2014-02-07 17:58
Switzerland's Simon Ammann prepares for an attempt in training for the men's normal hill ski jumping at the 2014 Winter Olympics at Krasnaya Polyana, Russia. (Matthias Schrader, AP)

Switzerland's Simon Ammann prepares for an attempt in training for the men's normal hill ski jumping at the 2014 Winter Olympics at Krasnaya Polyana, Russia. (Matthias Schrader, AP)

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Sochi - Sochi has lit up with music and dance to unleash the ultimate achievement of Vladimir Putin's Russia: a Winter Olympics to showcase the best athletes on ice and snow the world has to offer.

The opening ceremony on the edge of the Black Sea and subsequent games are Russia's chance to tell its story of post-Soviet resurrection to the world - and dispel the anger, fear and suspicion that has marred the build-up to these most expensive Olympics ever.

Just after the sun set on Thursday over the Caucasus Mountains and the seashore, Russian TV star Yana Churikova shouted to the crowd: "Welcome to the centre of the universe!"

Soon to come are the athletes. Some 3 000 in 98 events, more people and events than ever at the Winter Games.

- AP

Read more on:    sochi  |  russia
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