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Four South Sudanese Among 29 Olympic Refugee Team To Participate

South Sudan Flag in Rio 2016 Olympics Game

Four South Sudanese will be among 29 athletes from 12 sports that will form the Olympic Refugee Team at Tokyo 2020, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced last week.

The chosen competitors, selected from a group of 55 promising refugee athletes from 13 countries that were given IOC scholarships, are set to compete across athletics, badminton, boxing, canoeing, cycling, judo, karate, taekwondo, shooting, swimming, weightlifting and wrestling at the Games.

The squad, which features athletes from 13 host National Olympic Committees, includes six which competed on the first Olympic Refugee Team at the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.

These are swimmer Yusra Mardini, judoka Popole Misenga, and track and field athletes Anjelina Nadai Lohalith, James Nyang Chiengjiek, Paulo Amotun Lokoro and Rose Nathike Lokonyen.

Alaa Maso is also set to compete in swimming, while Misenga is one of six judoka selected for the team by the IOC, joining Sanda Aldass, Ahmad Alikaj, Muna Dahouk, Javad Mahjoub and Nigara Shaheen.

Dorian Keletela, Jamal Abdelmaji Eisa Mohammed and Tachlowini Gabriyesos have been chosen as the other track and field athletes.

Badminton player Aram Mahmoud, boxers Wessam Salamana and Eldric Sella Rodriguez, canoeist Saeid Fazloula and cyclists Masomah Ali Zada and Ahmad Badreddin Wais have also been picked for the team.

They have been selected alongside karateka Wael Shueb and Hamoon Derafshipour, shooter Luna Solomon, taekwondo players Dina Pouryounes Langeroudi, Kimia Alizadeh and Abdullah Sediqi, weightlifter Cyrille Fagat Tchatchet and Greco-Roman wrestler Aker Al Obaidi.

Alizadeh won a bronze medal at Rio 2016 aged 18, representing Iran, but fled the country last year.

The team is nearly three times the size of the 10-strong refugee team at Rio 2016, and includes 10 men and nine women.


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