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Foreign Olympic Torchbearers Hunted
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If you are a foreigner who has lived on the Chinese mainland for at least a year, you could be holding the Olympic torch aloft next year.


A nationwide hunt for eight foreign Olympic torchbearers is being launched today by Lenovo, the worldwide partner of the Olympic torch relay, along with China Daily, the country's only national English daily newspaper.


In addition to meeting the Olympic torchbearers' selection criteria, participants will have to submit a photo, along with a 500-word essay about their lives in China and why they think they should be selected as torchbearers, by the end of this month.


The organizers encourage expatriates from all walks of life to take part in the event, especially those who love Chinese culture and history and are committed to promoting friendship and exchanges between China and the rest of the world.


Contestants' stories will be featured on the newspaper's website and the public invited to vote for their favorite participants online. By the end of November, the judges' panel will declare the winners based on the number of votes received and their evaluation of the participants' personal experiences.


China Daily will cover the whole selection process and print some of the interesting stories in its weekly publication, The Olympian.


The organizers of the Beijing Olympic Games began recruiting 21,880 torchbearers from around the world on June 23 through various organizations and entities. There are two stages in the worldwide selection process.


The first one is through recommendations made by various organizations and institutions. The second is an open process, in which public nominations are accepted. Five percent of the torchbearers are expected to be non-Chinese people living on the ChineseĀ mainland.


(China Daily September 7, 2007)

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