The Greek Olympic Committee handed over the Olympic flame to Japan in Athens on Thursday in a ceremony held without an audience amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Tokyo organizing committee representative Naoko Imoto received the flame from president of the Hellenic Olympic Committee Spyros Capralos.
The flame will be transported to Japan aboard a special aircraft. It is scheduled to arrive at the Air Self-Defense Force's Matsushima base in Miyagi Prefecture, northeastern Japan, on Friday.
After the flame is displayed in the three northeastern Japan prefectures of Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima, hit hard by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, the Olympic torch relay will start at the J-Village soccer training center in Fukushima.
Thursday's ceremony was drastically scaled back due to the COVID-19 outbreak. It took place at the Panathenaic Stadium, the venue used for the first modern Olympics in 1896. (QNA)
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