It was an initiative driven by the Brazilian government to mark the countdown to the day before the opening ceremony of the Olympic Summer Games, scheduled at 20.00 (Brazilian time) on Friday (early Saturday morning in India), the Brazilian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Among the participating cities were Athens, Buenos Aires, Madrid, Mexico City, Lima, Paris, Atlanta, Doha, Johannesburg, Beijing, Sydney, and Tokyo, EFE news reported.

Most of these cities lit up at least one of its monuments with the Brazilian flag but others such as Beijing did so on the iconic 'Bird's Nest' as the country's Olympic stadium is known.

In Brazil, all eyes were fixated on Christ the Redeemer statue on Corcovado mountain in Rio de Janeiro, one of the Seven Wonders of the world, which was lit green and yellow from 18.00 (local time).

The Olympic host city also lit some facilities of the Olympic Park in Barra de Tijuca in green and yellow.

Among the illuminated monuments were the Panathenaic Stadium in Athens, the Monument to the Spaniards and Galileo Galilei planetarium in Buenos Aires and the Angel of Independence, Olympic Stadium and Museo Soumaya in Mexico city.

Other monuments which formed part of the initiative were the Aspire Tower in Doha, Nelson Mandela Bridge in Johannesburg, National Stadium in Lima, Hotel de Ville in Paris, Sydney Opera House and Japan's tallest building, the Skytree in Tokyo.

Tokyo, host city of the 2020 Olympic Games, decided to extend the special lighting at the 634-metre high tower until the end of Rio 2016.It will be illuminated with the red and white colours of Japan when a Japanese athlete wins a gold medal In Rio de Janeiro.

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