Iranian women will be allowed to attend men’s soccer matches

Iranian women will be allowed to attend men’s football matches after a 40-year ban, announced this Sunday the president of the Iranian Football Federation.

“One of the main features of this season (…) is that women will be able to enter the stadiums,” Mehdi Taj said during a live match draw ceremony.

The men’s championship, in which 16 teams participate, is due to start in August.

The Islamic Republic has banned women’s access to men’s football matches for more than 40 years, with some exceptions.

The religious, who play a key role in the decisions made in Iran, believe that women should avoid being in a masculine environment and see men in sportswear, with shorts.

Taj specified that some stadiums in the cities of Isfahan, Kerman (center) and Ahvaz (west) are “ready” to accommodate women during matches. She did not cite any stadiums in Tehran, the country’s capital.

In August 2022, the women were exceptionally allowed to attend a football championship match in Tehran.

And in October 2019, nearly 4,000 Iranian women were able to attend Iran’s 2022 World Cup qualifier against Cambodia at Tehran’s Azadi Stadium for the first time since the 1979 revolution.

Iran has faced mounting pressure to allow women into matches following the 2019 death of fan Sahar Khodayari, who blew herself up out of fear of jail after trying to attend a match disguised as a man.

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