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IOC Reveals Largest-Ever Refugee Olympic Team for Paris 2024

Posted : 03 May 2024

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) introduced the largest-ever Refugee Olympic Team for Paris 2024, aiming to secure its first-ever medal in the Games. This marks the team's third appearance since its inception at Rio 2016 and continued participation at Tokyo 2020.


With 74 refugee scholarships funded by the IOC leading up to Paris, a team of 36 athletes, representing 11 countries, is set to compete across 12 sports, including 14 athletes from Iran and five each from Afghanistan and Syria.


During a livestream from Olympic House in Lausanne, Switzerland, IOC president Thomas Bach announced the team members, who reacted with various emotions ranging from fist pumps to tears of joy.


The team will be under the leadership of Chef de Mission Masomah Ali Zada, a former participant for the Refugee team in road cycling at Tokyo 2020. Additionally, a new emblem for the team, to be used during the opening ceremony in Paris, was unveiled, replacing the previous logo of the Olympic rings.


Amid the announcement, IOC's NOC relations director James Macleod addressed a recent doping scandal involving Anjelina Nadai Lohalith, a refugee athlete who tested positive for the banned drug Trimetazidine (TMZ).


Lohalith, a two-time Olympian in the 1,500 meters, faces a four-year ban, becoming the third refugee athlete in recent months to encounter doping-related issues. Macleod emphasized the importance of adhering to anti-doping regulations and assured that refugee athletes receive proper education and regular testing to ensure compliance with doping protocols leading up to the Games.


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