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Eritrea U-20’s Footballers Disappear In Uganda

Five Eritrean national footballers have disappeared in Uganda in the middle of the regional CECAFA Women’s U-20 Challenge Cup tournament.

The players fled from their hotel in Jinja, east of the capital Kampala, and are believed to have sought asylum.

All five missed training on Tuesday, just hours after their 5-0 loss to Ethiopia in their second match of the on-going CECAFA Women’s U-20 Championship in Njeru.

The news about their disappearance was confirmed by CECAFA in a press statement indicating that the police had been informed.

“CECAFA has confirmed that five Eritrean players have this morning disappeared from their hotel in Jinja, Uganda,” CECAFA said on Tuesday.

[perfectpullquote align=”full” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]“The matter has been reported to the Police in Jinja and investigations are on-going. CECAFA, the Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA) and Police are doing their best to locate the players.”[/perfectpullquote]

Reports suggest security has been stepped up around the hotel to stop more players from fleeing.

In the past, Eritreans footballers have taken the opportunity of trips abroad to flee, with most cases having been reported in Uganda where there is a big populations of their countrymen.

In December 2013, nine members of the Eritrea men’s national football team and the coach of the squad disappeared in Kenya following the CECAFA Senior Challenge tournament.

In December 2012, 17 players from men’s national team  and the team doctor went missing from CECAFA tournament  and were later given asylum by Uganda.

And in 2019, seven members of Eritrea men’s national football squad disappeared in Uganda after the end of the 2019 CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup tournament.


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