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SOCHI, November 29 (R-Sport) – Russian President Vladimir Putin toured the venue of the Sochi 2014 Olympic opening ceremony on Friday.
The visit to the 40,000-seater Fisht Olympic Stadium, which is nearing completion at the center of the coastal Olympic Park, comes some 70 days before the Games begin.
The facility, the only one yet to be completed, will serve as the venue for the lighting of the Olympic cauldron, kicking off the start on February 7 to a little more than two weeks of sporting competition.
Putin toured the stadium with the general director of state-run television network Channel One, Konstantin Ernst, who had significant role in designing the arena to accommodate broadcasting requirements.
"You were the architect to a large extent, because the stadium was done according to your scenario for the opening and closing ceremonies," Putin told Ernst.
The capacity for the arena will be increased by 5,000 after the Games, when it is to be used as a football stadium for the 2017 Confederations Cup and the 2018 World Cup.
The Fisht arena, which is specially designed to grant spectators views of the mountains to the north and the Black Sea to the south, is named after a nearby peak in the Caucasus range.
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Earlier this month, Russia hosted the Fourth International Meeting of the Arctic Council at Naryan-Mar, a seaport in the Barents Sea, to discuss issues relating to the infrastructure and safety of ships passing through the Northern Sea Route (NSR).