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Ghostly Ruins: Athens Olympic Venues Ten Years Later

Ten years after Greece hosted the 2004 Summer Olympics, Greeks are questioning how their country has benefited from the multi-billion dollar event.

. Ten years after Greece hosted the world's greatest sporting extravaganza, many of its once-gleaming Olympic venues have been abandoned, while others are used occasionally for non-sporting events such as conferences and weddings. For many Greeks who swelled with pride at the time, the Olympics are now a source of anger as the country struggles through a six-year depression, record unemployment, homelessness and poverty. Just days before the anniversary of the Aug. 13-29 Games in 2004, many question how Greece, among the smallest countries to ever host the Games, has benefited from the multi-billion dollar event.

In the photo above, a podium stands inside the marble Panathinaikon stadium in Athens on July 29, 2014. The Panathinaikon stadium was the venue of the first modern Olympics in 1896 and was also used for the Archery events and the finish of the Marathon during the Athens 2004 Games. Yannis Behrakis / Reuters

. Garbage floats in a deserted swimming pool at the Olympic Village in Thrakomakedones, north of Athens, on July 25. Yannis Behrakis / Reuters

. A woman jogs past the Velodrome at the Athens 2004 Olympic Complex on July 27. Yannis Behrakis / Reuters

. The entrance to the Olympic Village remains blocked in the town of Thrakomakedones, north of Athens, on July 25. Yannis Behrakis / Reuters

. The abandoned stadium which hosted the beach volleyball competition during the Athens 2004 Olympic Games stands at the Faliro complex, south of Athens, on July 29. Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

. Athletes practice at the rowing center that hosted the rowing competition during the Athens 2004 Olympic Games in Schinias, east of Athens, on July 24. Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

. The abandoned Canoe and Kayak Slalom Center at the Hellenikon complex, south of Athens, on July 16. Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

. The abandoned hockey stadium at the Hellenikon complex, south of Athens, on July 16. Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

. The abandoned softball stadium at the Hellenikon complex, south of Athens, on July 16. Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

. Broken seats are discarded at the abandoned baseball stadium at the Hellenikon Olympic complex in Athens on July 16. Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

. The rowing center which hosted the competition during the Athens 2004 Olympic Games in Schinias, east of Athens, on July 24. Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters