Allow South Sudanese runner Guor Marial to compete in the @Olympics Marathon
  • Petitioned Count Jacques Rogge

This petition was delivered to:

President of the International Olympic Committee
Count Jacques Rogge

Allow South Sudanese runner Guor Marial to compete in the @Olympics Marathon

    1. Nadin Hadi
    2. Petition by

      Nadin Hadi

      London, United States

  1.  
  2.   
July 2012

Victory

Thanks to everybody, who signed this petition. You are wonderful. The marathon will take place on August 12 2012.

This week, thousands of athletes and staff are arriving in London for the 2012 Summer Olympics, which kick off on July 27. But there is one deserving athlete whose invitation hasn't yet arrived. His name is Guor Marial, and last October he qualified for the Olympic marathon with the blistering time of 2 hours, 14 minutes, 32 seconds.

Marial is also a refugee from Unity State, in what is now South Sudan - and therein lies the problem. Because South Sudan has no National Olympic Committee, and because Marial has chosen not to run for Sudan (whose security forces killed 28 members of his family), he has been left without a national Olympic sponsor

Like the International Olympic Committee itself, we believe that every individual - displaced or not - is deserving of equal dignity and opportunity. That's why we’re calling on the IOC to let Marial join the 2012 Summer Olympics as an Independent Participant. This designation has been used for years to allow talented athletes from dissolved or new nations to compete at the highest level, and it is just what Marial deserves.*

Please sign the petition to show your support and lobby the IOC to allow Guor Marial to compete at Olympics as an Independent Participant. You can also lobby the IOC on Twitter (https://twitter.com/olympics) and Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/olympics). Please be polite and courteous.

I’ve spent some time in Sudan and the people I met there were extraordinary.  Last week was the first anniversary of South Sudan’s independence and the IOC have a great opportunity to give South Sudan hope and something to celebrate. Guor represents the best of what the Olympics is meant to be and he deserves a place on the marathon start line.

So far, the Government of South Sudan and Refugee International have lobbied the IOC to allow him to compete, but to no avail. Let’s do some good.

*Text from adapted from http://www.refugeesinternational.org/blog/sudan-refugees-olympic-dreams-jeopardy by Michael Boyce. Please note – I am not Michael Boyce, nor am I affiliated with Refugees International in any way.

Recent signatures

    News

    1. We did it! Official Confirmation

      Nadin Hadi
      Petition Organizer

      Thank you to everyone who signed the petition. You're wonderful. Good job internets! The marathon takes place on 12th August if you want to watch the race and support Guor.

      Passport-less athlete approved to compete

      The EB also approved a request to allow marathon runner Guor Marial to compete at London 2012 as an Independent Olympic Athlete (IOA) under the Olympic flag. Marial was born in what is now South Sudan, which does not currently have a recognised National Olympic Committee. The athlete, who does not hold a passport from any country, is a permanent resident (refugee status green card) of the United States but not a citizen. As such he is unable to compete for the United States, South Sudan or Sudan. Marial qualified for the Games with an A Standard time on 2 October 2011.

    2. I think we might have just won

      Nadin Hadi
      Petition Organizer

      Alain Lunzenfichter, deputy editor of French sports newspaper L'Equipe and President of the World Association of Olympic Journalists just tweeted that Guor will compete as an independent under the Olympic flag. Waiting for independent confirmation.

    3. Reached 3,000 signatures
    4. 2500 Supporters!

      Nadin Hadi
      Petition Organizer

      Well done everyone! This is a fantastic landmark. Please please keep signing and sharing. We need even more supporters to keep the pressure on the IOC and Guor's story in the public eye!

    5. Reached 2,500 signatures
    6. Please support Guor's Facebook events page

      Nadin Hadi
      Petition Organizer

      Guor's friend Peter Samuels has set up a Facebook events page here. Please send your support this way!

      https://www.facebook.com/events/435441976499867/

    7. Reached 500 signatures
    8. News from Refugee International

      Nadin Hadi
      Petition Organizer

      I know some supporters are concerned there might be enough time to make this happen and get Guor accepted as an independent. Refugee International have been working closely with Guor lobbying the IOC. This is what Michael Boyce, the Press and Information Officer had to say:

      "It's not clear whether there's a strict deadline for IOC accreditation. All I can say is that, based on our communications so far with the IOC, it's still possible to get Guor into the Games if they make a decision on his status in the next few days.

      One other thing in our favor is that the men's marathon does not take place until August 12th - so in that respect, there's still plenty of time before the starting gun!"

      So, please keep signing and sharing! It'd be amazing to Guor there on the starting line under the Olympic flag.

    9. Reached 250 signatures
    10. Thank you for your support so far!

      Nadin Hadi
      Petition Organizer

      I've set up a Facebook group here - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Get-Guor-Marial-to-the-Olympics/346396448770001?ref=hl and we're working on a big social media push tomorrow. Please join, like and share the FB page. The more noise we can make and support we can generate for Guor, the better. Let's get him to the marathon start line under the Olympic flag.

    11. Reached 50 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Nickie Barnard RUISLIP, MIDDLESEX, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 2 years ago

      I'm signing because I devoutly believe the Olympics shold be about individual excellence, as were the original games, rather than a spurious national pride.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Philip Goatly CHELMSFORD, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 2 years ago

      I believe that the Olympic Ideals should allow anyone who is good enough to compete

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • James Ince-Scott YORBA LINDA, CA
      • about 2 years ago

      What should the Olympic movement mean? If it gets so caught up in rules and reasons that a qualifying athlete cannot compete for his own country (however new that country may be), then there needs to be some changes made. Let Marial run!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Ancil Greer YACOLT, WA
      • about 2 years ago

      Finally, a good reason to protest!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Peter Bossom CARDIGAN, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 2 years ago

      Allowing this man to run is to uphold the real spirit of the olympic games.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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