Friday, December 18, 2009

UPDATE on the Eritrean soccer team

I know you're all waiting with bated breath to find out what happened to the Red Sea Boys, right? Well, it turns out they're in Kenya. And they ain't comin' back.

Eritrea's entire national soccer team is seeking asylum in Kenya, joining tens of thousands of compatriots who have fled one of Africa's most repressive governments.

The team absconded after traveling to Nairobi for a regional tournament. Eritrea, with only about 4 million people, was the second-biggest source of asylum seekers in the world last year, and the missing players are probably the highest-profile defectors since the country won independence in 1993.

The 11 players and one substitute were reported missing over the weekend when the team plane returned to Eritrea without them after a match against Tanzania. After going into hiding, the players contacted the U.N. refugee agency in Nairobi, which directed them to file asylum applications at Kenya's Immigration Ministry.

So there's that cleared up.

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