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‘Symbol of Hope’: Refugee Team Named for Rio Olympics

By VICTOR MATHER JUNE 3, 2016

Ten athletes were chosen on Friday for a team that will represent the world’s refugees at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

The team will march behind the Olympic flag in the opening ceremony on Aug. 5, taking a place just in front of the host country, Brazil.

The group would be “a symbol of hope for refugees worldwide and bring global attention to the magnitude of the refugee crisis,” the International Olympic Committee said in announcing the team’s members.

“You’re an athlete; you don’t think like you’re Syrian or from London or from Germany,” Mardini, 17, said in a video produced by the I.O.C. “You will just think about your race. You have your lane, your swimming cap, your swimming lesson. That’s it.”

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