Refugee athletes came away from the Beirut Open and 5th Asian Cadet and Junior Kyorugi and Poomsae Championships in Beirut with a haul of medals including three golds.
All members of the refugee team come from Iran and range from 19 to 12 year’s old.
In the Beirut Open Seniors, Mahdi Khavari, fresh from his silver at the Octagon Diamond Game in August, won the gold medal in the M-58kg, defeating Türkiye’s Gorkem Polat two rounds to one.
14 year old Fatemeh Jami, who is supported by World Taekwondo through the World Taekwondo Refugee Solidarity Programme 2023, won gold in the Beirut Open Cadets as she defeated Jordan’s Naya Alkayali two rounds to nil in the F-172cm.
The clean sweep of gold medals for the refugee team at the Beirut Open was completed by Mohammad Hesam Hamedi who won gold in the junior event beating Iraq’s Omar Wshyar Taha in the M+78kg. Hamedi added a bronze medal to his collection from Beirut as he overcame Uzbekistan’s Amirkhon Khakimov in the 5th Asian Junior Taekwondo Kyorugi Championships.
Melika Barbari competed across three competitions in the Lebanese capital. In the Beirut Open Cadets she won silver in the F-144cm losing out to Lebanon’s Maria Dib, 2-1 in the final. She beat India’s K.L. Mahisha Priyanka in the bronze medal match of the F-144cm in the 5th Asian Cadet Taekwondo Kyorugi Championships. Finally, in the 5th Asian Cadet Taekwondo Poomsae Championships she came fifth in the Recognised Individual and won the Good Fighting Spirit prize.