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Refugees Olympics team draws massive fans

Brazil

<p>The Olympic Refugees team continues to win fans over, as Congolese Judoka, Popole Misenga became the first refugee athlete to win a competition in the Olympics, as fellow Congolese refugees living in Rio cheer him on. </p> <p>“When it was my turn to fight, I felt very pleased. I think that when the fight began, all the refugees in the world were happy in all the camps. People were happy that a part of us represented us in a fight in Rio de Janeiro,” said Popole Misenga.</p> <p>“We are refugees in Brazil. This is us now. We are here to write a new history, because it is time to be happy. I want to be happy now. I do not want to think about what happened before,” he added.</p> <p>Misenga won over fans in his clash in the 90-kilogram Judo competition, and became the first refugee athlete to win a competition in the Olympics.</p> <p>Both Popole Misenga and Yolande Bukasa Mabika from the Democratic Republic of Congo, are now out of the competition after being defeated in the preliminaries.</p> <p>The 10 members of the first ever refugee team have been big crowd pleasers in Rio since they marched into the opening ceremony to thunderous applause under the Olympic flag.</p> <p>“I support them. All my brothers and sisters around me supports them. When I say my brothers and sisters I don’t mean just the Congolese but all the refugees. Everybody stands by them,” said one Congolese refugee Mireille Muluile. </p> <p>“We are very happy. We are on a high. It’s a huge victory for us to be represented like this. To be recognised as human beings, as athletes, like everyone else. We are capable of being athletes, doctors, journalists. It sends a message that a refugee is like anybody else,” said another Congolese refugee in Brazil, Charley Kongo. </p> <p>The refugees team is composed of athletes from the South Sudan, Syria, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Ethiopia.</p>

I think that when the fight began, all the refugees in the world were happy in all the camps.

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