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A Tragic Stampede Mars the Opening Ceremony of the Games of the Islands

A dramatic stampede claimed the lives of at least 12 people last night in front of the Mahamasina stadium in Antananarivo. Despite this tragedy, the opening ceremony of the eleventh Games of the Islands was maintained by the organizers. Nearly 50,000 people attended a grandiose spectacle, in a very heavy context.

Written by Antoine Forestier – Saturday August 26, 2023 at 8:13 a.m., updated on Saturday August 26, 2023 at 8:48 p.m.

They didn’t know anything about what had just happened a few dozen meters away. When the 974 delegation enters the track, smiles are on everyone’s lips. “It’s incredible to see all these people, it’s impressive”, “They all came to support us, I hope we will do them well by putting on a great show during the competition” deliver hot Matthéo Gilbert Galard and Alizée Morel, the Reunion flag bearers, alongside the mascot of the Ti Bayoun delegation.

The 720 representatives of Reunion – 450 athletes, plus supervisors, coaches, referees… – set off first. The ceremony has just begun when they are all amazed by the atmosphere of the largest stadium in Antananarivo. “They did things well. Frankly, it’s amazing. Now we can’t wait to start » slips the basketball player Mickaël Var. “It’s just awesome, it’s a sick thing. That’s wonderful. We’re going to win everything thanks to that, it’s too good! adds Dario Dorféans, coach of the taekwondo team.

The ceremony lasted nearly 4 hours. Many athletes whose competition starts this Saturday left before the end so as not to waste too much energy. This is not the case with karateka. “The last time karate was selected for the Games was 16 years ago,” says Malyka Guillou. And we won’t start the competition until August 31st. So that’s two good reasons to enjoy the evening to the end.

A successful show

They must not have been disappointed because the end of the show was quite simply grandiose. More than 4,000 extras on a stage with video animations, laser beams moving in all directions, and above all an impressive drone show.

In the sky of Tana, thanks to dozens of flying machines, appeared – among others – the mascot Maki, a small colorful lemur, the logo of the Games, and its slogan “in unity and diversity”.

With this ceremony, Madagascar wanted to impress its friends from the other islands, and it was frankly successful. But that will not make us forget the terrible results of the stampede which took place before its kick-off. Thousands of people waited outside the stadium for hours, without ever being able to access it, for lack of places. At least 12 people, including children, died in a stampede. The injured would be nearly a hundred.

2023-08-26 22:13:38
#Video #Island #Games #Ceremony #Magic #Tragedy

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