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Olympic Flame cauldron lit up in North Caucasus’ North Ossetia capital

January 30, 2014, 15:28 UTC+3 VLADIKAVKAZ

Around 20,000 people gathered for the ceremony at Spartak stadium

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© ITAR-TASS/Maxim Kimerling

VLADIKAVKAZ, January 30. /ITAR-TASS/. President of Russian North Caucasian Republic of North Ossetia Taimuraz Mamsurov and most prominent freestyle wrestler in the history of this kind of sports Artur Taimazov lit up the Olympic Flame cauldron in North Ossetia’s capital, Vladikavkaz, on Thursday.

“Our hearts are saying all together, “Oh, sport, you are peace! Let it be so!” Mamsurov said at a festive ceremony, naming North Ossetia as “the most Olympic soil in the world.”

After the Olympic Flame-lighting ceremony the city of Vladikavkaz was officially named as “a capital of Sochi Olympics” for half an hour.

The organizing committee said that around 20,000 people gathered for the ceremony at Spartak stadium.

Before the festive relay of Olympic torchbearers local pop stars, school dance companies, a men’s choir of North Ossetia’s heroic song performed for spectators.

A total of 21 torchbearers participated in the Olympic Flame relay. These are Olympic champions, Paralympic athletes, politicians, public figures and war veterans.

North Ossetia is the native land for the largest number of freestyle wrestling champions in the world. North Ossetian athletes have won 67 medals of world championships and Olympics. Settlement Nogir was already put on Guinness World Records as a homeland of four Olympic champions - freestyle wrestlers Artur Taimazov, Elbrus Tedeyev, Alan Khugayev and heavyweight lifter Timur Taimazov.

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