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Rio Olympics 2016: Games set for opening ceremony

The 2016 Olympic Games officially start in Rio on Friday with the opening ceremony at the Maracana Stadium.

Athletes from 206 nations and a refugee team are in Brazil to compete in 28 sports and be watched by a global audience of billions.

The build-up has been dominated by a Russian doping scandal, the Zika virus and issues with the city’s security, infrastructure and venues.

There will be 10,500 athletes from a record 207 teams competing in Rio, including the Refugee Olympic Team, while it will be the first time Kosovo and South Sudan have taken part in the Games.

The Refugee Olympic Team will compete under the Olympic flag and has 10 members – five from South Sudan, two from Syria, two from DR Congo and one from Ethiopia.

With 554 athletes, the United States has the largest Olympic team, but 100m runner Etimoni Timuani is the only athlete from the South Pacific nation of Tuvalu.

The Rio Games will be the first to feature Olympians born since the year 2000 – and the youngest is 13-year-old Nepalese swimmer Gaurika Singh.

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