Rio 2016 refugee team: The tragic stories behind some of the world’s most inspiring athletes

A group of ten athletes will compete at the Summer Olympics under no recognisable national banner - but as refugees

Ryan Ramgobin
Saturday 06 August 2016 08:49
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Rio 2016 refugee team: The tragic stories behind the world’s most inspiring Olympic athletes

The preparations for Rio 2016 have been hit with scandal and controversy from accusations of Russian doping to poor infrastructure and sanitation.

Just this week: the Olympic sailing ramp collapsed, rooms in the Olympic village have flooded, and an investigation has found that waterways in Rio hold sanitation levels 1.7m times what is considered “alarming” in the United States and Europe.

Throw in a major health concern in the form of the Zika virus and an upcoming impeachment trial for Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff; it’s understandable why excitement levels are not hitting full throttle.

But, sport has the unique power to overcome adversity, and once the Games are underway, we will be captivated by superstar personalities and inspirational stories.

And no story is more rousing than that of the first ever refugee team to compete at an Olympic Games.

Watch the video above to find out why.

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