Al-Monitor | : Iranian women’s relationship with sports events could hardly be more complicated. They are allowed to watch female competitions — but barred from most men’s events (women have occasionally been granted permission to watch men’s volleyball and basketball).
The toughest taboo has always been men’s soccer; this has drawn constant criticism from women’s advocates, who have launched various campaigns to push for their right to see the sport played. The campaigns have been coupled with and backed up by international pressure as well.
During his March 2018 trip to Iran, the president of the world soccer governing body FIFA attended the popular derby between Tehran archrivals Persepolis and Esteghlal in the capital. Following the match, Gianni Infantino sat down with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. And back in Zurich the day after, the FIFA chief announced in a presser that his Iranian host had given his word that the ban on women’s entry to men’s soccer events will be lifted.
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