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IOC Announces Financial Aid For Athletes Remaining In Afghanistan

Afghan athletes march into the stadium during the opening ceremony for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Summer Games in July.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has announced $560,000 of aid for the winter to members of the Afghan sports community who are still living in Afghanistan after the Taliban takeover in August.

The aid package was approved by the IOC Executive Board on December 8, the committee said in a statement, adding that it will work with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees to deliver the money directly to up to 2,000 athletes in Afghanistan.

An amount of $265 would be available to beneficiaries identified in coordination with the Afghan national Olympic committee, it said.

"It is...a result of our talks and our quiet diplomacy efforts with the Taliban. Not only do they accept this help, but they support it. It shows that quiet diplomacy works, and what effect it can have," IOC President Thomas Bach said.

It also comes after 300 Afghan athletes, coaches, and sports officials were evacuated on humanitarian visas obtained by national Olympic committees from their governments since the Taliban seized power in mid-August.

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