Beijing will plant more than 40 million potted flowers around Games venues and city streets, including special “heat-resistant” strains capable of withstanding the Chinese capital’s summer temperatures.
The flowers would also grace hotels, the Olympic Village and decorate the Tiananmen Square. “July and August are usually a hard time for flowers,” Wang Sumei, deputy director of the Beijing Landscape Forestation Bureau, was quoted as saying.
“We picked up over 20 kinds of heat-resistant flowers from more than 500 species of flowers to decorate the city.”
Beijing cracks down on fake guns for security
Beijing: China has launched a crackdown on the production and sale of replica guns as an added security measure. Local police had been ordered to “destroy the marketing, storage and transport network of imitation guns and track down and bust the original sources of the illegal production”, a news agency quoted the Ministry of Public Security as saying.
Catholic churches hire foreign priests
Beijing: Catholic churches in Beijing will hire foreign priests to conduct masses to meet the demands of Games visitors from overseas. Masses held in French, Italian and German would be increased at the city’s major Catholic churches. The China Christian Council would also print 100,000 copies of the Bible and New Testament with the Olympic logo on the cover.
New medals table could save EU’s image
Vienna: A new medals table at the Olympics next month could be the solution to the European Union’s lack of popularity among some of its citizens. The European Commission’s representative to Austria, Georg Doutlik, has sent a letter to Austrian newspapers asking them to include an EU category in their medals tables, in a bid to raise the bloc’s profile.
Thanou in Greece’s official team list
Athens: Dope-tainted sprinter Katerina Thanou has been included on Greece’s official team list. Thanou had made Greece’s provisional team list last week after finishing the 100 metres in 11.39 seconds in Greek.
Messi awaits Olympic decision
Madrid: Lionel Messi, who has been called on to represent Argentina, remained at a Barcelona pre-season training camp in Scotland on Tuesday with the approval of Argentina’s Football Federation, a Barcelona spokesman said.
The 21-year-old winger will stay in Saint Andrews while he waits for FIFA to decide whether or not Barcelona are obligated to let him take part in the Games next month, the spokesman said.