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Djibouti at the 2016 Summer Olympics

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Djibouti at the
2016 Summer Olympics
Flag of Djibouti.svg
IOC code DJI
NOC Comité National Olympique Djiboutien
in Rio de Janeiro
Competitors 7 in 3 sports
Flag bearer (opening) Abdi Waiss Mouhyadin
Flag bearer (closing) Mohamed Ismail Ibrahim
Summer Olympics appearances (overview)

Djibouti competed at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from 5 to 21 August 2016. The nation's participation marked its eighth appearance at the Summer Olympics. Djibouti did not field any athletes at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens.

The Djibouti National Olympic Committee (French: Comité National Olympique Djiboutien) sent its second largest delegation to the Games, falling one athlete short of the record eight athletes sent to compete at the Barcelona 1992 Summer Olympic Games. A total of seven athletes, six men and one woman, were selected to the Djibouti team to compete in athletics, judo, and swimming. Marathoner Mumin Gala was the only athlete returning for his second appearance from London 2012, while middle-distance runner Abdi Waiss Mouhyadin led his squad as Djibouti's flag bearer in the opening ceremony.

Djibouti failed to collect an Olympic medal in Rio de Janeiro, which would have been the country's first since the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, where Hussein Ahmed Salah won the bronze in the men's marathon. Ayanleh Souleiman almost ended the nation's 28-year drought on the podium, but he slipped out of medals to fourth in the men's 1500 metres.


Djibouti participated in eight Summer Olympic Games between its debut in the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, United States and the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.[1] Djibouti made their Olympic debut in 1984, sending three athletes to the Games.[2] The highest number of Djiboutian athletes participating in a Summer Games is eight in the 1992 Games in Barcelona, Spain.[1][3] Marathon runner Hussein Ahmed Salah is the only Djiboutian athlete to win a medal, which he did in the 1988 marathon.[4]

Athletics (track and field)[edit]

Souleiman during the 1500 m in Rio.

Ayanleh Souleiman qualified for the 800 m race by having a qualifying time better than 1:46.00.[5] He placed first in his heat for the 800 m with a time of 1:45.48, which qualified him for the semifinal round along with three other runners in his heat. There were seven heats in the first round. Hassan Mohamed Kamil, Secretary of State for Youth and Sports, congratulated him saying, "May God give him the strength to win the next competitions and always raise the national colors."[6] Souleiman finished with a better time in the semifinal round with a time of 1:45.19, but placed fourth in the heat and did not qualify for the final round. He would have needed to beat Ferguson Cheruiyot Rotich's time of 1:44.65 to qualify for the final round.[7]

Ismail Ibrahim competing in the 3000 m steeplechase in Rio.

Djibouti had two athletes qualify for the 1500 m run with a qualification time better than 3:36.20.[5] Ayanleh Souleiman finished third in the first heat with a time 3:39.25, which qualified him for the semifinals. He finished in 2nd place in that heat with a time of 3:39.46, which qualified him for the finals. In the finals, Souleiman finished in fourth place with a time of 3:50.29. He was 0.05 seconds away from the bronze medal, and 0.29 seconds away from the gold.[7][8] The other Djiboutian that qualified for the 1500 m run, Abdi Waiss Mouhyadin, did not finish the race. On the final lap, he tripped and required help to leave the track.[9][10] Waiss was also the flagbearer for Djibouti in the opening ceremony.[11]

Mohamed Ismail Ibrahim qualified for the 3000 m steeplechase by performing better than the qualification time of 8:30.00.[5] He finished with a time of 8:53.10 for 12th place in his heat. He would have needed a time of 8:26.59 or better to advance to the finals, and was therefore eliminated.[7] Ibrahim was the closing ceremony flag bearer for Djibouti.[12]

Mumin Gala, the only returning Olympian for Djibouti, qualified for the marathon with a time better than 2:19:00.[5] Gala set his personal record at Rio with a time of 2:13:04 and finished in 12th place out of 155 participants.[7]

Kadra Mohamed Dembil was the sole woman athlete for Djibouti in Rio. She qualified for the 1500 m via a universality placement.[5] Dembil finished 12th out of 14 in her heat, failing to advance to the next round. With her time of 4:42.67, she set a national record.[13]


  • Note–Ranks given for track events are within the athlete's heat only
  • Q = Qualified for the next round
  • q = Qualified for the next round as a fastest loser or, in field events, by position without achieving the qualifying target
  • NR = National record
  • N/A = Round not applicable for the event
  • Bye = Athlete not required to compete in round

Track & road events
Athlete Event Heat Semifinal Final
Result Rank Result Rank Result Rank
Ayanleh Souleiman 800 m 1:45.48[7] 1 Q 1:45.19[7] 4 Did not advance
Abdi Waiss Mouhyadin 1500 m DNF[7] Did not advance
Ayanleh Souleiman 3:39.25[7] 3 Q 3:39.46[7] 2 Q 3:50.29[7] 4
Mohamed Ismail Ibrahim 3000 m steeplechase 8:53.10[7] 12 N/A Did not advance
Mumin Gala Marathon N/A 2:13:04[7] 12
Track & road events
Athlete Event Heat Semifinal Final
Result Rank Result Rank Result Rank
Kadra Mohamed Dembil 1500 m 4:42.67[7] 12 Did not advance


Anass Houssein qualified for the Men's −66 kg via a wildcard spot.[14] He competed on August 7 at the Carioca Arena 2. Houssein started in the second round against Ma Duanbin of the People's Republic of China, but lost the first match which eliminated him from contention.[15]

Athlete Event Round of 64 Round of 32 Round of 16 Quarterfinals Semifinals Repechage Final / BM
Anass Houssein Men's −66 kg Bye  Ma Db (CHN)
L 000–110[15]
Did not advance


Djibouti received a universality invitation from FINA to send a male swimmer to the Olympics.[16][17] Bourhan Abro, a son of diplomant Ahmed Abro, competed in the men's 50 m freestyle at the Olympic Aquatics Stadium. He has competed for Djibouti in swimming at other international competitions. Abro arrived at Rio later than the rest of the delegation and joined them there.[18] Abro competed in the second heat and finished with a time of 27.13, placing 74th among 85 competitors. He needed a time of 22.10 to advance to the semifinals.[19]

Athlete Event Heat Semifinal Final
Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank
Bourhan Abro Men's 50 m freestyle 27.13[19] 74 Did not advance


  1. ^ a b "Sports Reference – Countries – Djibouti". Sports Reference. Archived from the original on 5 August 2016. Retrieved January 2, 2017.
  2. ^ "Sports Reference – Los Angeles 1984 – Djibouti". Sports Reference. Archived from the original on 5 March 2016. Retrieved January 2, 2017.
  3. ^ "Sports Reference – Barcelona 1992 – Djibouti". Sports Reference. Archived from the original on 24 September 2014. Retrieved January 2, 2017.
  4. ^ "Sports Reference – Seoul 1998 – Djibouti – Athletics". Sports Reference. Archived from the original on 9 March 2016. Retrieved January 2, 2017.
  5. ^ a b c d e "Djibouti Athletics Qualification Statistics". Road to Rio. Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  6. ^ "JO-RIO 2016: Ayanleh Souleiman qualifies for the semi-finals of the 800 m". La Nation ler Quotidien Djiboutien (in French). Retrieved January 1, 2017.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Almeida, Arthur. "Athletics Results Book Rio 2016" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on September 21, 2016. Retrieved January 2, 2017.
  8. ^ Hinton, Marc (August 21, 2016). "Rio Olympics 2016: Nick Willis claims bronze, secures spot as 1500m's oldest medallist". Retrieved September 13, 2016.
  9. ^ "Men's 1500m Rio Olympic Recap". August 25, 2016. Retrieved January 2, 2016.
  10. ^ "Best Images from Aug. 16 at the Rio Olympics". MSN. Retrieved January 2, 2017.
  11. ^ "The Flagbearers for the Rio 2016 Opening Ceremony". International Olympic Committee. Retrieved August 5, 2016.
  12. ^ "Rio 2016 Closing Ceremony - Flag Bearers" (PDF). August 21, 2016. Retrieved July 14, 2018.
  13. ^ "1500 metres women". IAAF. Retrieved February 20, 2017.
  14. ^ "Anass Houssein Judoka". Retrieved February 16, 2017.
  15. ^ a b "Judo: Men -66 kg". BBC. Retrieved January 2, 2017.
  16. ^ "Swimming World Rankings". FINA. Archived from the original on January 6, 2011. Retrieved March 14, 2015.
  17. ^ "Men's Final Entry List" (PDF). FINA. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  18. ^ "OJ 2016: Bourhan Ahmed targets gold in 50m freestyle". La Nation ler Quotidien Djiboutien.
  19. ^ a b "Olympics-Swimming-Men's 50m freestyle heats results". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved January 2, 2017.

External links[edit]