ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Iran says it will allow 3,500 female fans to attend an upcoming men’s international match in Tehran, state-run media reported on Friday.
According to IRNA news agency, Iran’s Football Federation is “conforming” to the promises it made regarding “the explicit demand of FIFA” and will allow Iranian women to “attend the match.”
Iran plays Cambodia on Oct. 10 at Tehran’s Azadi Stadium in the second match of its 2022 World Cup qualifying campaign.
IRNA said the tickets allocated for the female fans had “sold out in less than an hour,” noting that “the presence of 3,500 female Iranian fans is guaranteed.”
During a press conference on Sept. 22, FIFA president Gianni Infantino said Iran had “assured” the sport’s world governing body that it would allow women to enter football stadiums “as of the next international game.”
The FIFA president’s comments came after criticism targeting Tehran following the death of a female football fan who killed herself after she was denied access to watch a men’s football game.
“We need to have women attending—we need to push for that with respect but in a strong and forceful way, and we cannot wait anymore,” Infantino told reporters.
FIFA said it would send a delegation to Tehran to monitor access for women.
Meanwhile, a public prosecutor in Iran criticized FIFA’s demand for allowing women to attend men’s football matches.
“FIFA’s pressure is another calculated plot by the enemies,” Iranian Prosecutor-General Mohammad Jafar Montazeri was quoted as saying in late September by Tasnim news agency.
Montazeri said FIFA had “no legal authority” to tell Tehran how to manage its sports arenas, including allowing women to enter grounds and watch men’s teams play.
Since 1979, the ultra-conservative Iranian regime has prevented females from attending male football matches.