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Iran must let women into football grounds, says FIFA president Infantino

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President of world football governing body, Gianni Infantino has instructed Iran to henceforth allow women into the stadium to watch football matches.

Iranian women are banned from stadiums, and a football fan, Sahar Khodayari, died this month when she set herself on fire while awaiting trial for trying to attend a match.

Infantino made it known in a statement that FIFA’s position is “clear and firm” and that women “have to be allowed” to attend football matches in the country.

“Our position is firm and clear. Women have to be allowed into football stadiums in Iran,” he said.

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“I am hopeful that the Iranian Federation and the Iranian authorities were receptive to our repeated calls to address this unacceptable situation.

“I contacted them several times in the recent past and so has the FIFA administration. We have a delegation of FIFA members in Iran at the moment and I am looking forward to hearing good news from them.

“We understand there are steps and processes that need to be taken before this is done in a proper and safe way but now is the moment to change things and FIFA is expecting positive developments starting in the next Iran home match in October.”

Khodayari was arrested in March for trying to enter the stadium, reportedly disguised as a man.

If the ban in lifted, women will be allowed to watch live Iran’s World Cup qualifier with Cambodia next month.

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Ben Ugbana

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