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African runner wants asylum

2012-07-26 18:58
Olympic flame (Gallo Images)
London - An East African athlete in Britain for the London Olympics has walked into a police station and asked for asylum, British media reported on Thursday.

The Daily Mail newspaper said the middle-distance runner, who is on the Olympic squad for an East African country, claimed asylum at a police station in Leeds, northern England on Tuesday.

Media said the man's asylum application was being processed after police passed the case to the UK Border Agency.

Several countries have training camps in northern England, with the largest being that of the Chinese team in Leeds.

A spokesperson for Britain's interior ministry said he could not comment on individual cases.

He added that all athletes taking part in the Games are expected to leave when their accreditation expires, and any applications for asylum would be dealt with according to standard immigration procedures.

The Olympics will officially kick off in the British capital on Friday with a €34.5m opening ceremony.

Read more on:    olympics 2012  |  uk
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