The Olympic torch on its first-day relay in Beijing will travel 16.4 km in just over four hours with 433 torchbearers, said the organizer in Beijing on Tuesday.
The relay will start from the Meridian Gate of the Forbidden City on Wednesday morning, said Sun Xuecai, deputy director of the city sport department and deputy chairman of the organizing committee of the Olympic torch relay in Beijing, at a press conference.
The first torch bearer will be Yang Liwei, the country's first astronaut, he said.
On the first of its three-day relay in Beijing, the torch will travel through seven districts, passing city landmarks, including Tiananmen Square, the egg-shaped National Center for the Performing Arts and Qianmen (the Southern Gate). It will end at the Temple of Heaven.
Among the bearers, 29 will be foreigners, two from Hong Kong and one from Taiwan, Sun said.
(Xinhua News Agency August 5, 2008)