Protest in Iran about volleyball

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Protest in Iran about volleyball

Human Rights Watch (HRW) is helping to fight against Iran’s ban on women watching volleyball matches.

Since the 1979 revolution, Iranian women have not been allowed to go to live sports events because they are ‘un-Islamic’. But in 2012, this ban started to include volleyball too. And volleyball is the most popular sport in Iran.

So men and women cannot watch volleyball matches in public areas together – even on television. If people do this, they can be arrested.

The #Watch4Women campaign is putting pressure on the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) to make Iran change this law.

Minky Worden, Director of Global Initiatives at HRW, says that if women cannot go to matches, Iran should not be allowed to host international games. The Iranian Volleyball Federation hosted six international matches in 2015. Women and girls were not allowed to go. This is against women’s rights, the FIVB’s constitution and the Olympic Charter.

‘It is a basic human right to cheer for your team,’ said Darya Safai (for the group Let Iranian Women Enter Their Stadiums). She says the volleyball campaign is a way to change the discrimination against women in Iran.

Kelsi Farrington

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