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Queen Elizabeth II to open Games

india Updated: Mar 03, 2012 00:41 IST
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Queen Elizabeth II's busy summer calendar just got a bit more crowded.

Buckingham Palace said the monarch will open both the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics this summer, signaling that both events will be celebrated as great state occasions - something the British are famous for.

It is the first time the queen has opened the Paralympic Games, though she has often honored Paralympians for their achievements in the past.

Elizabeth and her husband, Prince Philip, will perform the ceremonial role at the 80,000-seat Olympic Stadium when the Olympic Games begin on July 27, and for the Paralympic Games on Aug. 29.

The queen follows in the footsteps of her father, the late King George VI, who opened the 1948 London Olympics.