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Opening ceremonies set in Sochi for winter games

2014 Winter Olympics

IOC President Thomas Bach, right, hands over the Olympic torch to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon as the torch relay arrives in Sochi, ahead of the 2014 Winter Olympics on Thursday in Russia.

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SOCHI, Russia — It's designed to celebrate a millennium of Russian might and this country's modern rebound, and kick off two weeks of extraordinary human endeavors and planetary sportsmanship. But the ceremony opening the Sochi Olympics on Friday, more than anything, will be about one man: Vladimir Putin.
He charmed and strong-armed his way to hosting the games at a summer beach resort that he envisioned as a winter paradise. He stared down terrorist threats and worldwide wrath at a scarcely veiled campaign against gays. He has shrugged off critiques that construction of the most costly games in Olympic ...

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