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Rights group Open Stadiums has called on football’s ruling body FIFA to ban Iran’s team from the upcoming World Cup.
Open Stadiums said in a letter addressed to FIFA president Gianni Infantino that Iran should not be allowed to play at the November 20 to December 18 tournament in Qatar.
It cited FIFA statutes on human rights and non-discrimination.
Open Stadiums wants free access for women to football games in Iran which is yet to happen in spite of pressure from FIFA.
Iran is currently clamping down on wide-ranging protests in the wake of the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini after being arrested for violating the country’s strict dress code for women.
Amini died on Sept. 16 with the cause of her death remaining unknown.
“Why will FIFA give the Iranian state and its representatives a global stage, while it (Iran) not only refuses to respect basic human rights and dignities but is currently torturing and killing its own people?” the Open Stadiums’ letter said.
“Where are the principles of FIFA’s statutes in this regard? Therefore, we ask FIFA …. to immediately expel Iran from the World Cup 2022 in Qatar.”
Several Iran men’s national team players have backed the protests on social media over the past days.
Iran has been drawn into Group B at the World Cup together with England, Wales, and the U.S.