Yiech Pur Biel, a South Sudan athlete, says the team has a simple goal for this years games. We want to show the world that we can do everything any human being can do, because this is the goal for us and for millions of refugees, Pur Biel told German news outlet Deutsche Welle. The International Olympic Committee handpicked refugees from around the world to highlight the refugee crisis plaguing the world today. The refugee Olympic team will feature athletes from Syria, the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan and Ethiopia. This is the first time in history that there will be a refugee team competing in the Olympics. The U.N. estimates that over 65 million people are displaced from their homes, over 21 million of them are refugees. careerThis is the highest level of refugees ever recorded in history. Thomas Bach, the president of the IOC believes these refugees athletes will show the world that despite the unimaginable tragedies that they have faced, anyone can contribute to society through their talent, skills and strength of the human spirit. Aside from being incredible runners, swimmers and fighters, these athletes carry incredibly powerful stories. Syrian swimmer, 18-year-old Yusra Mardini, used her swimming skills to help save more than a dozen refugees from drowning in the Mediterranean. When their overloaded boat broke down as they fled to Greece, Mardini helped swim the boat to shore.
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