Senior Correspondent, Greece
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May 10, 2012

Olympics-London 2012 torch lit in Olympia

ANCIENT OLYMPIA, Greece, May 10 (Reuters) – The countdown to
this summer’s London Olympics kicked off with the kindling of
the Games torch by the sun’s rays in ancient Olympia on
Thursday, sparking a relay that will culminate with the lighting
of the Olympic stadium’s cauldron at the opening ceremony on
July 27.

On a warm and sunny day at the site of the ancient Olympics,
actress Ino Menegaki, playing the high priestess, needed only a
few seconds to ignite the torch with the help of a parabolic
mirror in this traditional ceremony less than 80 days before the
Games get under way.

May 9, 2012

Greek crisis won’t overshadow Olympic torch lighting – Coe

ANCIENT OLYMPIA (Reuters) – Greece’s economic crisis will not upstage the lighting of the Olympic flame at the birthplace of the Games, London 2012 chairman Sebastian Coe told Reuters on Wednesday.

The debt-stricken country – where the flame will be lit amid the ruins of Ancient Olympia on Thursday – risks bankruptcy and tumbling out of the euro zone.

May 9, 2012

Greek crisis won’t overshadow torch lighting – Coe

ANCIENT OLYMPIA (Reuters) – Greece’s economic crisis will not upstage the lighting of the Olympic flame at the birthplace of the Games, London 2012 chairman Sebastian Coe told Reuters on Wednesday.

The debt-stricken country – where the flame will be lit amid the ruins of Ancient Olympia on Thursday – risks bankruptcy and tumbling out of the euro zone.

May 9, 2012

Olympics-Greek crisis won’t overshadow torch lighting – Coe

ANCIENT OLYMPIA, May 9 (Reuters) – Greece’s economic crisis
will not upstage the lighting of the Olympic flame at the
birthplace of the Games, London 2012 chairman Sebastian Coe told
Reuters on Wednesday.

The debt-stricken country – where the flame will be lit amid
the ruins of Ancient Olympia on Thursday – risks bankruptcy and
tumbling out of the euro zone.

May 9, 2012

Sun god reigns over torch-lighting rehearsal

ANCIENT OLYMPIA, Greece (Reuters) – Priestesses in pleated robes swayed under a scorching sun at the birthplace of the ancient Olympics on Wednesday in the final rehearsal to light the flame that will burn at the London Games.

Far from the political drama embroiling debt-stricken Greece, locals and foreign tourists gathered at the ruins of the Doric temple to goddess Hera to watch as Greek actress Ino Menegaki solemnly stooped to light the torch with a concave mirror.

May 9, 2012

Olympics-Sun god reigns over torch-lighting rehearsal

ANCIENT OLYMPIA, Greece, May 9 (Reuters) – Priestesses in
pleated robes swayed under a scorching sun at the birthplace of
the ancient Olympics on Wednesday in the final rehearsal to
light the flame that will burn at the London Games.

Far from the political drama embroiling debt-stricken
Greece, locals and foreign tourists gathered at the ruins of the
Doric temple to goddess Hera to watch as Greek actress Ino
Menegaki solemnly stooped to light the torch with a concave
mirror.

May 8, 2012

Leftist sets tough conditions for Greek government

By Karolina Tagaris and Deepa Babington

(Reuters) – Radical Leftist Alexis Tsipras began efforts to form a Greek government on Tuesday by renouncing the terms of an international bailout and threatening to nationalize banks in a statement likely to reduce his chances of success.

Left Coalition leader Tsipras, 37, received a mandate from the president after an election in which Greeks showed their hatred of harsh austerity measures by abandoning mainstream parties who negotiated an EU/IMF bailout that is keeping the country from bankruptcy.

May 6, 2012

Greek far-right leader savors electoral success

ATHENS (Reuters) – Greece’s extreme-right Golden Dawn party savored unprecedented success in Sunday’s general election by promising to rid Greece of illegal immigrants, branding journalists “liars” and warning all “traitors” to run scared.

Little more than an obscure fringe group barely a year ago, the party is set to blow past estimates and enter parliament for the first time with as much as 8 percent of the vote.

May 6, 2012

Greeks maul pro-bailout parties: exit polls

ATHENS (Reuters) – Greek voters enraged by economic hardship deserted governing parties in droves in an election on Sunday, according to exit polls that threw doubt on the country’s future in the euro zone.

Polls by six different pollsters indicated the only two parties supporting an EU/IMF bailout that is keeping Greece from bankruptcy would likely fall short of enough support to form a stable coalition government.

May 4, 2012

Greek leftist taps into anti-politician anger

ATHENS, May 4, (Reuters) – In barely two years, Fotis
Kouvelis has gone from obscure leftist rebel to the man who
could hold the key to Greece’s next government, after winning
over many voters with his low-key, avuncular style.

With a pro-euro and anti-austerity message, the
63-year-old’s Democratic Left party has tapped into voter anger
over the terms of an international bailout to emerge as one of
four parties battling for third place when Greeks vote in a
general election on Sunday.