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Post-Olympic rush begins

Associated Press

Athens — Thousands of athletes, sports officials and visitors to Athens began leaving the Greek capital Monday in a mass post-Olympic exodus.

Athens International Airport said it had scheduled a record 900 flights and expected more than 9,000 athletes and Olympic officials to leave by the end of the day. About 11,000 athletes from 202 countries participated in the Athens Games.

Several cruise ships that served as floating hotels also set sail from the port of Piraeus, the port authority said.

About 15,000 people, including government leaders, stayed aboard more than eight cruise ships and luxury yachts. They included the world's largest passenger ship, the Queen Mary 2 which sailed Monday.

More than 1,000 athletes left before Sunday night's closing ceremony.

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