Stadium ban for women to be reintroduced in Iran

Tehran: A stadium ban for women is to be reintroduced in Iran, multiple local news reports said on Wednesday.

The reports said that the Iranian FA has ordered the ban to be imposed in the north-western city of Tabriz in the wake of “repulsive incidents” at a home game of local top flight club Tractor-Sazi.

It was not clear whether the stadium ban only applies in Tabriz or for all matches. Tractor-Sazi is one of the most popular clubs in Iran, with a large fan base including many women.

Observers believe that a female pitch invader at a match last week is a reason for the latest decision by the FA.

A woman ran onto the pitch during the Pro League match between Tehran club Esteghal and Aluminium Arak and embraced Esteghlal and national team goalkeeper Hossein Hosseini.

Hosseini was fined around $7,500 and suspended for one match after he reportedly briefly held her. In Iran, it is forbidden to touch women who are not a part of the close family.

Iran’s arch-conservative clergy has argued that women had no business in stadiums with fanatical male fans.

Under pressure from the world governing body FIFA, the ban was relaxed somewhat in recent years, with a certain number of women allowed to attend matches.


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