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Glittering Games open in Astana

A dramatic three-hour opening ceremony marked the beginning of the 7th Asian Games in Astana, Kazakhstan, yesterday. In front of a crowd of 30,000 people at the city's indoor football stadium, a group of ethnic drummers accompanied a dramatised performance of Kazakh national poetry.

A fireworks display concluded the show, which formed the prelude to a competition that will feature more than 1,100 participants from 27 countries contesting 65 titles.