Advertisement

Australia-based sprinter lands Afghan Olympic team spot

The Australian Olympic Committee have congratulated dual Olympian track sprinter Kimia Yousofi, now based in Australia, on her selection in the Afghanistan team for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Kimia, who was Afghanistan's Flag Bearer at Tokyo 2020, was one of five athletes and administrators plus families, who received safe passage into Australia in 2022.

The AOC and International Olympic Committee worked with a range of parties, including successive federal government administrations, to assist the endangered athletes following the Taliban takeover in their home country.

Following her selection, she will now attend her third Olympic Games, competing in the 100 metres.

Yousofi said: "It's an honour to represent the girls of my homeland once again. Girls and women who have been deprived of basic rights, including education, which is the most important one. I represent the stolen dreams and aspirations of these women.

"Those who don't have the authority to make decisions as free human beings. They don't even have the permission to enter a park. I'm deeply grateful to all those who have stood by me on this journey and made this possible."

AOC Chief Executive Officer Matt Carroll said Kimia and her family faced many risks and the task of extricating her from Iran, where she was based, was a challenging time for all.

He said: "Her story is one of inspiration for women and girls in Afghanistan and anywhere in the world, who are denied basic rights, including the right to freely practice sport."

The Afghanistan Olympic Committee operate outside the country and will be sending three female athletes to the Olympics for the first time.