First Asian Beach Games opening ceremony held in Bali

BALI ISLAND, Indonesia, Oct. 18 (Xinhua) -- The first Asian Beach Games opening ceremony was held on October 18 in Bali Island of Indonesia, which attracts almost 3000 athletes from 45 countries and regions in Asia.

Thousands of dancers performed traditional program, which featured local arts and cultures at the opening ceremony held at the Garuda Wisnu Kencana Cultural Park in Bali Island.

Jacques Rogge, the president of the International Olympic Committee, Indonesia president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and athletes from 45 countries and regions present the opening ceremony.

The multi-event will be another history for Indonesia in organizing an event under the sanctions of Olympic Council of Asia after the fourth Asian Games in Jakarta, 1962.

Asian Beach Games in Bali is Asia's first multiple sports event situated on beaches. A total of 17 sports and two demonstration sports will be held in the games, which will last nine days at four world renowned beaches, namely Kuta Beach, Nusa Dua, Sanur Beach and Serangan Island.

The biennial Asian Beach Games, together with the Asian Games, the Asian Winter Games and the Asian Indoor Games, organized by the Olympic Council of Asia, are four major sporting events in Asia.

The third Asian Beach Games will be hosted in Haiyang, east China's Shandong province in 2012, after the second in Oman in 2010.

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