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Rio de Janeiro to host 2016 Olympics

Rio de Janeiro erupted in joy on Friday after the Brazilian city won the vote to host the 2016 Olympic Games.

It will be the first time in the history of the games that the world's biggest sporting event will take place in South America.

The decision by the International Olympic Committee meeting in Copenhagen kicked off a Carnival-style celebration on the sand of Copacabana beach as thousands of residents danced and shouted in delight after watching the vote live via television.

Rio beat surprise finalist Madrid in the last round of voting. A favourite, Chicago, was knocked out in the first round. Tokyo was eliminated in the second round.

Rio, home to 12 million people including the greater metropolitan area, had played heavily on the fact that South America has never previously hosted the games, while Europe, Asia and North America have done so repeatedly.

Africa now remains the only continent to not host the Olympics, excluding Antarctica.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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