IOC announces refugee team for Rio Olympics

Rio de Janeiro, June 4 (IANS) Ten refugees will participate at this year’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro by representing a new flag for athletes who have fled conflict-riven countries and regions, the International Olympic Committee has said.

“They will form a team unlike any other that has competed in the Olympic Game before… giving hope to people displaced by war and social unrest all over the world,” the official Rio2016 website said on Friday, Xinhua news agency reported.

The team includes five runners from South Sudan, two swimmers from Syria, two judokas from the Democratic Republic of Congo and a marathon runner from Ethiopia.

They will be a part of the first ever Refugee Olympic Team (ROT).

Former marathon world record-holder Tegla Loroupe of Kenya will be the team’s chef de mission, while Brazilian Isabela Mazao will be her deputy.

The ROT delegation will also include five coaches and five other officials.

IOC President Thomas Bach said the initiative would send a powerful message of hope to asylum seekers around the world.

“It is a signal to the international community that refugees are our fellow human beings and are an enrichment to society,” he said.

The Refugee Olympic Team:

Rami Anis (male): Country of origin – Syria; host NOC – Belgium; sport – swimming

Yiech Pur Biel (male): Country of origin – South Sudan; host NOC – Kenya; sport – athletics, (800m)

James Nyang Chiengjiek (male): Country of origin – South Sudan; host NOC – Kenya; sport – athletics (400m)

Yonas Kinde (male): Country of origin – Ethiopia; host NOC – Luxembourg; sport – athletics (marathon)

Anjelina Nada Lohalith (female): Country of origin – South Sudan; host NOC – Kenya; sport – athletics (1500m)

Rose Nathike Lokonyen (female): Country of origin – South Sudan; host NOC – Kenya; sport – athletics (800m)

Paulo Amotun Lokoro (male): Country of origin – South Sudan; host NOC – Kenya; sport – athletics (1500m)

Yolande Bukasa Mabika (female): Country of origin – Democratic Republic of the Congo; host NOC – Brazil; sport – judo, (70kg)

Yusra Mardini (female): Country of origin – Syria; host NOC – Germany; sport – swimming

Popole Misenga (male): Country of origin – Democratic Republic of the Congo; host NOC – Brazil; sport – judo (-90kg).

–IANS

pgh/

Related Posts

Leave a Reply