Iranian women allowed to watch football at stadium for first time in decades

  • Women free to watch World Cup qualifier after ban lifts
  • Those attending in Tehran will be segregated from men

Iranian women will be able to enter a football stadium on Thursday for the first time in decades, after Fifa threatened to suspend the Islamic republic over its controversial male-only policy. Iran has barred female spectators from football and other stadiums for around 40 years, with clerics arguing they must be shielded from the masculine atmosphere and sight of semi-clad men.

World football’s governing body last month ordered Iran to allow women access to stadiums without restrictions and in numbers determined by demand for tickets. The directive came after a fan dubbed “Blue Girl” died after setting herself on fire in fear of being jailed for dressing up as a boy in order to attend a match.

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