Refugee Olympic Team Receives Prestigious Spanish Award

MADRID (AP) — The Refugee Olympic Foundation and the Refugee Olympic Team are the winners of this year’s Princess of Asturias Prize for Sport, the Spanish foundation that organizes the awards announced on Wednesday.

The award jury said their work to help refugee athletes “merges the highest values ​​of sport, such as integration, education, solidarity and humanity, and represents a message of hope for the world”.

The International Olympic Committee founded the Refugee Team so that athletes forced by conflict to leave their country could still compete. The team participated for the first time in the Rio de Janeiro Games in 2016 with 10 athletes from Ethiopia, Congo, Syria and South Sudan. For the Tokyo 2020 Games, the team had 29 members.

The Olympic Refugee Foundation was created to help displaced athletes pursue their careers and foster their broader development.

The Princess of Asturias Prize jury congratulated the winners “for the opportunity they offer athletes in conflict zones and places where human rights are violated, preventing them from being able to exercise their sporting and personal activities. “.

The foundation and team were chosen from a total of 24 nominees.

The 50,000 euro ($52,600) prize is one of eight prizes, including in the arts, communication and science, awarded each year by the foundation.

The awards are among the most prestigious in the Spanish-speaking world. An awards ceremony usually takes place in October in the city of Oviedo in northern Spain.

Past winners of the sports award are American track and field athlete Carl Lewis and tennis players Steffi Graf from Germany and Rafael Nadal from Spain.


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