October 5, 2013 4:05 pm

Olympic flame handed over to Sochi Games organizers; peaceful protest at Russia anti-gay law

ATHENS – The Olympic flame has been handed to organizers of the Sochi Winter Olympics in a ceremony at the site of the first modern summer games.

The same actress, dressed as a high priestess, who lit the flame in Ancient Olympia last Sunday, lit a torch from a cauldron placed inside Athens’ Panathinaiko Stadium. The flame, placed in a lantern, was handed over to Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak.

After a seven-day run through Greece, the flame will cover 65,000 kilometres on Russian soil. The record-setting relay will start on Monday in Moscow and will finish in Sochi on Feb. 7, the opening day of the games.

A few dozen activists staged a peaceful protest earlier Saturday against Russia’s law banning gay propaganda.

© The Canadian Press, 2013

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