Several Olympic athletes have applied for asylum in the UK

With the Olympics in full swing, several athletes on UK visas have applied for asylum. Some of the athletes were set to compete in the games while several others were granted UK visas as part of the Olympic training squad but did not qualify for the final national team. This is in part because athletes are required to meet a minimum score in order to qualify during Olympic trials for the final team. If you do not meet this score during the Olympic trials then you cannot compete on the national team during the Olympic Games.

The first asylum-seeker, an East African middle distance runner, was reported to have entered a police station in Leeds to seek asylum.

The other asylum-seekers were three Sudanese athletes not on the Olympic team. A spokesman for the Sudanese embassy in London said Al-Nazeer Abdul Gadir has already applied, while Sadam Hussein and Osman Yahya Omar are missing and expected to lodge their own claims soon. The spokesman added that the men had hoped to qualify for the Olympics but had failed to achieve the necessary times in their events.

According to the United Nations refugee agency the UNHCR, there were 25,455 asylum applications in the UK last year of which 790 were from Sudanese nationals. Asylum applications from Sudan are reported to have peaked in 1993 during the civil war, although there continue to be many asylum applications from this country as they are still experiencing instability and continued conflict.

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