7 Olympic athletes from Cameroon disappear, spark asylum fears
Seven Olympic athletes from Cameroon have gone missing after competing in the 2012 London games. Their disappearance has sparked fears that the athletes left the games so that they could claim asylum in England for economic reasons.
According to a Reuters report, the group of athletes, including five boxers, a swimmer, and a soccer player (footballer) were confirmed missing from the Olympic Village in East London by the head of mission for Team Cameroon, David Ojong.
Ojong identified the missing athletes as Thomas Essomba, Christian Donfack Adjoufack, Abdon Mewoli, Blaise Yepmou Mendouo, Serge Abomo, Paul Ekane Edingue and Drusille Ngako.
The seven athletes are said to have visas that would allow them to remain in England until November.
Of the 59 athletes and officials that Ojong said were staying in the Olympic Village, 28 have returned home, 24 are still in London at the Olympic village and 7 are missing.
Britain’s Home Office, which is responsible for immigration, said that it is not able to comment on whether or not any of the missing athletes have indeed applied for asylum.
According to the International Olympic Committee, they have not been notified about any missing athletes.
“We are unaware of it,” IOC spokesman Mark Adams said when asked if game organizers heard of the disappearances.
This is not the first time Cameroonian athletes have gone missing at international events. At past commonwealth games, Cameroonians have left their delegations with out permission.
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