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Following the success of Rio 2016, a Refugee Olympic Team (EOR) will participate for the second time, at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.

Thanks to scholarships provided by the IOC, 49 promising refugee athletes from 11 countries are training hard in the hope of making it to the Tokyo 2020 Team, whose composition will be announced in 2021. The 49 Refugee Athlete Scholarship-holders come from 18 host countries – from Australia to Kenya, Europe and the United States – and represent 11 sports: athletics, wresting, judo, taekwondo, cycling, swimming, badminton, boxing, shooting, karate and weightlifting.

Did you know that…

  • The Refugee Olympic Team official acronym is EOR, based on the French name: Équipe Olympique des Refugiés;
  • During the Opening Ceremony, the team will march with the Olympic flag in second position, immediately after Greece;
  • For all official representations of the team (including possible medal ceremonies), the Olympic flag will be raised and the Olympic anthem will be played;
  • The Refugee Olympic Team’s Chef de Mission is Tegla Loroupe. During the Olympic Games, she will be assisted by Deputy Chef de Mission Stephen Pattison from the UNHCR in Geneva.
  • Like all the other 206 NOCs taking part in the Olympic Games, the team will stay at the Olympic Village and get its own welcome ceremony at the Olympic Village;

The IOC will continue to support the refugee athletes even after the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.

Refugee Olympic Team

At the United Nations (UN) General Assembly in October 2015, confronted with the global refugee crisis that has seen an estimated 68.5 million people in the world displaced, IOC President Thomas Bach announced the creation of the Refugee Olympic Team.

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Refugee Olympic Team


IOC President Thomas Bach announced at the United Nations General Assembly in October 2015 the creation of the Refugee Olympic Team – the first of its kind – to take part in the Olympic Games Rio 2016.

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In September 2017, during its Session in Lima, the IOC launched the Olympic Refuge Foundation to support the protection, development and empowerment of children and young people in vulnerable situations through sport.

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