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IOC's first refugee team arrives in Rio


07-30-2016 11:44 BJT

The first athletes from the International Olympic Committee's 10-member refugee team arrived at the airport in Rio de Janeiro on Friday. 

The athletes are South Sudanese refugees currently residing in Kenya. It is the first time the IOC has organized a team dedicated for athletes currently living under a refugee status. The athletes expressed their gratefulness for the opportunity to join the games.

"It's true - this is the first time that refugees participate in the Olympics. So also it is the first time for me to participate. It is very grateful for me, so I hope being a refugee means that refugees cannot do anything different," said Paulo Amotun Lokoro, South Sudanese Refugee Athlete.

"So refugees, they are human beings like other people. Refugees, they can do something here like somebody (anybody) else."

"Well it means a lot because for the President of the IOC (Thomas Bach) to realise that there is a need for an athlete that has refugee status to compete in the Olympics," said Tegla Loroupe, Chef de Mission of IOC's first refugee team.

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