Istanbul Boasts 2020 Games On 2 Continents

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ISTANBUL (AP) - Istanbul says its bid for the 2020 Olympics offers an opportunity for the games to be staged for the first time on two continents and in a secular Muslim country.

Istanbul says Turkey has a stable democracy and strong economic growth, which is more than 3½ times the European average. Istanbul's bid documents were made public Tuesday, a day after the files were submitted to the IOC in Switzerland.

The bid committee says of 36 planned venues, 11 are in place and 10 are about to be built.

The committee says Turkey has spent an average of $1.2 billion since 2005 to improve transportation in the city, and other major infrastructure projects would be completed by 2018.

Istanbul, which straddles Europe and Asia, is competing against Madrid and Tokyo.