London 2012: ‘No decision yet on Dublin Olympic torch visit’
Seb Coe reveals organisers are still waiting for the go-ahead for the Olympic torch to visit Dublin
London 2012 chairman Seb Coe admits he is still waiting for the green light for the Olympic torch to visit Dublin in the build-up to next year’s Games.
International stops for the torch were scrapped after protesters repeatedly hijacked the relay in the build-up to the Beijing Olympics – most notably in London and San Francisco.
It was subsequently ruled the torch must travel immediately to the host country after being kindled in Olympia, Greece but the International Olympic Committee have been sympathetic to the Republic of Ireland’s aspirations to host the flame when the torch visits Northern Ireland for four days next June.
Denis Oswald, who heads the IOC’s London inspection team, last year acknowledged the “special circumstances” of such a visit.
And the Olympic Council of Ireland claim to be confident the relay will stop off in Dublin, with influential Irish IOC member Patrick Hickey lobbying hard for support.
Hickey hopes the torch will be brought to Dublin after a symbolic border crossing at Newry to mark the peace process.
Several areas in Dublin are included in the projected torch route including the Garden of Remembrance and Croke Park.
“It’s being discussed at the moment, and as you can imagine there are a lot of inter-Governmental conversations taking place,” said Coe, on a visit to open a new £8.25m sports centre at St Mary’s University College in Twickenham.
“I am not going to pre-judge anything but I think most people that are involved in the process think it will be the right thing to do, including me.”
London 2012 have already announced 74 stops on the 70-day 8,000 mile relay, which will culminate at the Olympic Stadium on 27 July.