The non-participation of three Indian athletes leads to a renewed flare-up of tensions between China and India

The 2023 Asian Games, an “XXL” event for China

The 19th Asian Games will open in China this Saturday evening in Hangzhou in the east of the country. They last until October 2nd. These games have been postponed for a year due to Covid. The opening ceremony will be a real “ visual feast “, despite the rain, our special correspondent reports, Stephane Lagarde.

In addition, the competition has not started yet and fans are already repeating their “Jia You” during the preliminary round games. “Light up!”. Sports fans have been waiting for this for a year, in a China that emerged from health restrictions after all other countries.

The Hangzhou games have been on everyone's lips for a week. Beijing hopes to use the event to escape the grim economic slowdown. These are XXL games, with new disciplines such as e-sports or bridge. According to the organizers, more than 12,000 athletes from 45 countries took part in the trip. Many are hoping to score points ahead of next year's Paris Olympics. And as with every major event, China wants to demonstrate its technological strength here too.

50,000 hand-picked spectators will attend the opening ceremony this evening. The event was under very high security due to the presence of the head of state and foreign guests, including Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, King of Cambodia Norodom Sihamoni, Emir of Kuwait Nawaf al-Ahmed al-Sabah, and South Korean Prime Minister Han Duck-soo, among others.

The program is kept secret until the last minute. We just know that the choreography will use artificial intelligence and that a drone ballet will have to replace traditional fireworks.