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Commonwealth Games: More Than 200 Athletes Apply for Asylum in Australia

Since April 15, several African-born athletes and coaches have been in Australia for the Commonwealth Games held in Gold Coast on the east coast of the country.

Indeed, a senior official at the Australian Interior Ministry announced Monday, May 20, that nearly 200 competitors and staff members “were  legally admitted to the country because they requested a certain type of visa .” Meanwhile, 190 of them ” asked for a protection visa “, the others filed a request for another type of visa. Several of them have obtained waiting visas, question for the authorities to take a little time to examine their file.

According to the Australian Interior Ministry, the visas of 50 other people have expired and the authorities have no news of them. During the competition, several African athletes had disappeared. Last week, a refugee aid NGO said it had been contacted by a number of them seeking asylum advice shortly before their athlete visa expired.

This year, the athletes expected at the Commonwealth Games were warned against any visa override by the Ministry of the Interior, anxious to prevent the story from being repeated. But obviously, these warnings fell on deaf ears.

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