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Olympic flames to reunite in Lhasa Saturday

June 22, 2008

By Lin Shujuan, Staff Writer
China Daily (People's Republic of China)
June 202008-06-20 07:10

LHASA: The sacred Olympic flame that Chinese mountaineers carried to
the top of the world on May 8 will be reunited with the one on the
main torch relay route June 21.

A torchbearer (R) holds the Beijing Olympic torch while carring a
lantern encasing the Olympic flame before mounting the Mount
Qomolangma in this May 8, 2008 file photo. [Xinhua]

The one-day Lhasa leg of the relay starts in the morning after the
torch reaches the city from the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region,
organizers said.

The torch relay in the Tibet autonomous region, in which 156
torchbearers will take part, has been cut down to one day from the
originally planned two days because of the May 12 quake.

Some of the local torchbearers, who were supposed to participate in
the relay in Shannan district, will now carry the sacred flame in Lhasa.

Gangbung is the first Tibetan to climb Mount Qomolangma through the
north ridge (on May 25, 1960), and he will be the first local
resident to carry the torch in Lhasa. The last torchbearer will be
famous Tibetan singer Tseten Dolma.

The 11-km relay will start from Norbulingka and end at the Potala
Palace. Norbulingka, which means "treasure park" in Tibetan, is also
known as the Summer Palace of the Dalai Lama. The public garden is
about 1 km southwest of Potala Palace in the western suburbs of Lhasa.

Famous for its Tibetan ethnic and religious features and architecture
style, Norbulingka was listed by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage
Site in 2001 as an extension of the Potala Palace.

At the end of the relay, the "Qomolangma flame" will be reunited with
the main flame, after which the torch will travel to Qinghai
province, on Saturday night, for a three-day relay that starts on Sunday.
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