Beijing Unveils Mascots for 2008 Olympics – AP

Xgb10711111519 From AP, via ABC News:

After years of fierce lobbying and months of secrecy, Beijing unveiled five mascots for the 2008 Olympics on Friday, opening a marketing blitz that is expected to reap record profits.

In an elaborate, nationally televised gala at a Beijing sports arena to mark the 1,000-day countdown until the Games, senior Chinese leaders introduced the mascots cartoon renditions of a panda, fish, Tibetan antelope, swallow and the Olympic flame, each one the color of one of the Olympic rings.

“The five friendlies are an incredible little family carefully chosen by Beijing 2008 to represent all of China to carry a message of friendship to the children of the world,” International Olympic Committee president Jacques Rogge said in a statement that was read at the ceremony.

See also a humorous take on the new mascots from Chinese blog Massage Milk.