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London shares Olympics with the world


London shares Olympics with the world


Nial O’Reilly euronews, Lyon, France:
So after years of meticulous preparation all eyes are on London as the Games get underway. Joining us now is our very own Olympian, who’s carrying the torch for euronews, Ali Sheikholeslami, our UK correspondent….

Ali, you’ve been talking to lots of people in the run-up to this event – politicians, visitors, and ordinary Londoners – there’s obviously great excitement, but can the Games live up to the hype?

Ali Sheikholeslami, euronews, London: “I think so, Nial. This is London, this is one of the most international cities in the world, and you know it. With the Olympics there is a really great buzz. The city feels even more international. You walk on the streets and you see people from all around the world. And you see many people wearing those Olympic T shirts. There are uniform, there’s a great feeling.

Nial O’Reilly euronews, Lyon, France:
We’ve heard a lot about the transport difficulties, What’s been your experience of getting around the city – we hear it’s more of marathon than a sprint.

Ali Sheikholeslami, euronews, London:
That’s true underground trains sometimes get really unbearably crowded and, you know, if you look behind me, London is sunny and that is something that we don’t really get to experience a lot. It’s about 30 degrees – last week I was wearing a winter jacket. So, putting those two together the journey is not the best experience. However, in other times the train is working quite alright.

Nial O’Reilly euronews, Lyon, France:
Security’s also been an issue, how will those necessarily tough security measures affect people’s enjoyment of the games.

Ali Sheikholeslami, euronews, London: Here in London we are not used to seeing military officers and commandos walking around with big guns. There will be certainly that look. It will feel a little more military than it normally is. But I think people will normally be feeling a bit safe, because you know London has always been a target for terrorism – with the 7/7 bombings and all the rest – maybe people do need to feel safe.

Nial O’Reilly euronews, Lyon, France: It’s a once-in-lifetime event, but from talking to people there, would it be fair to say that most people don’t actually care about the sports side of it, or are they getting into it?

Ali Sheikholeslami, euronews, London: More than just a sprint event, the Olympics in London is something that is bringing people together. People are gatheing around, let’s say, the torch relay event… there will be, of course, screening of some of the games, there will be screening of the opening and closing ceremonies, so there is the community feeling and the feeling that people are being put together, they come together and take this as one big celebration, that’s just wonderful.

Nial O’Reilly euronews, Lyon, France:
Well Ali, keep flying the flag for euronews, we’ll be getting regular updates from you, thanks for joining us.

Follow Ali Sheikholeslami on Twitter

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