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IOC refugee team official tests positive for Covid-19 ahead of Tokyo Olympics

The International Olympic Committee refugee team had to delay their travel to Tokyo, as a team official tests positive for Covid-19 ahead of the Olympics

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Updated: 14 July 2021 10:52 AM GMT

An official of the International Olympic Committee's refugee team has tested positive for COVID-19 here, leading to a delay in their travel plans for the Tokyo Games even though all others have returned negative results for now.

"THe IOC Refugee Olympic Team came together for a 'Welcome Experience' in Doha, Qatar. Twenty-six of the 29 athletes and 11 officials participated," the IOC statement read. "On taking COVID-19 PCR tests before leaving for Tokyo, the test of an official returned positive. A follow-up test confirmed the result, while the tests of all other members of the team (athletes and officials) returned negative," it added.

Three athletes could not take part in the 'Welcome Experience' in Doha and two of them -- Ahmad Alikaj (judo) and Abdullah Sediqi (taekwondo) -- are due to arrive in Tokyo on Wednesday. "They are accompanied by coach Alireza Nassrazadany. All three are coming directly from their respective training camps," the IOC stated.

The official, who has been isolated by the Qatari Public Authorities, is considered asymptomatic and doing well. "The official was single-vaccinated and followed all COVID-19 countermeasures prior to departure and during the Welcome Experience," the IOC stated.

"As a consequence, it was decided that the team would currently not travel to Tokyo and will continue their training in Doha while being tested daily," it added.

The refugee team in the Olympics was first introduced in the 2016 Rio Games as a tribute to the courage and perseverance of all refugees.

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