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The 12 players will remain in Kenya as UNHCR work on their cases.

The High Commissioner for Refugees has granted the 12 members of the Eritrean national football team political asylum.

They were granted passes to allow them stay in Kenya as UNHCR begin investigation on their cases.

The players were interviewed by Kenya’s Ministry of Immigration officials on Wednesday night and later granted asylum after being cleared by UNHCR.

After being given the stamp of approval, which will last for three months, they were escorted to an undisclosed location in the city.

"They are under the UNHCR and cannot be arrested," an official at the UNHCR offices who sought anonymity told The Standard.

The players are said to have displayed affidavits they swore before departing Asmara, saying they would not go back because of harassment in their country.

The players disappeared on Monday moments before they were supposed to fly home after the end of the CECAFA tournament on Sunday.

James Momanyi,