Beijing Olympics organizers unveiled the longest Olympic torch relay in modern history but Taiwan later rejected the plan. For 130 days ahead of the opening of the Games in August 2008, the torch would travel 137,000 kilometres through 19 countries over five continents, the South China Morning Post reported. The relay would include North Korea. The plan is for the torch to arrive in China on March 31 and then travel to 113 cities and regions, including Lhasa. A second torch will be taken to Mount Everest, where a team will try to reach the summit in May. But Taipei rejected the plan to send the torch to the island, saying the plan undermined its "sovereign status", the newspaper reported. Officials from Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Office said Beijing wanted to use the route to mislead people into thinking Taiwan is part of Mainland China.
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