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Women allowed in for first time as Iran defeat Bolivia in football friendly

Wednesday, October 17th 2018 - 11:41 UTC
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Shall Iranian women no longer need to don fake beards to attend football stadiums? Shall Iranian women no longer need to don fake beards to attend football stadiums?

The friendly football match between Iran and Bolivia Wednesday in Tehran marked the first time women were allowed to attend a stadium since the Islamic Revolution of 1979. The Iranian squad defeated Bolivia 2-1.

 It is still unclear whether this is a one-time case or the beginning of a new era, since the government has not mentioned it specifically.

Women have been barred in Iran from attending football matches between male teams since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. President Hassan Rouhani has stated many times that he does not support this measure, giving Iranian fans hope that the ban would be soon lifted.

Tehran’s authorities had ruled that “a certain number of women” could attend the international friendly. The priority was given to the families of national team’s footballers, female athletes who compete for Iran’s football and futsal teams, and women working for the Iranian Football Federation.

During this year's FIFA World Cup in Russia, Iranian women were allowed into a football stadium to watch the screening of their national team’s match for the first time in the country’s history.

Before Wednesday, authorities had only allowed women to attend volleyball matches.

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