1. ITV Report

Political refugee realises Olympic dream in London

Guor Marial fled his homeland at the age of eight. Photo: APTN

Despite having no passport and no country, a marathon runner who ran for his life to escape a Sudanese child labour camp will be competing at the Olympic Games.

Guor Marial was cleared by the IOC to compete in London under the Olympic flag.

The 28-year-old fled his homeland, now known as South Sudan, at eight and spent time in Egypt before eventually reaching the United States, where he attends university in Iowa.

He posted the Olympic qualifying time in his first ever marathon last year but does not yet have American citizenship despite being a permanent resident of the US.

With South Sudan yet to have a national Olympic body, Marial became one of four competitors let in at the 2012 Games as independent athletes.

"I'm running for the refugees. And I'm running for the South Sudan especially," he said.