Thousands of Iranian female fans have attended their national team's soccer World Cup qualifier against Cambodia at Tehran's Azadi Stadium.
The October 10 match was the first time since shortly after Iran's Islamic Revolution in that women were allowed to watch a men's game without needing special, rare invitations or being forced to sneak in disguised as men. Some 3, tickets have been sold to female fans for the match, which Iran won Those lucky ones were segregated from men and watched over by female police officers.
Human rights watchdog Amnesty International called that a "token " and a "publicity stunt," given that the stadium has a capacity of nearly 80, The ban on women attending men's sporting events came to global prominence after Sahar Khodayari, dubbed "Blue Girl" for the colors of her favorite team, lit herself on fire outside court last month as she awaited trial for trying to attend a match disguised as a man. She died on September 9. FIFA, which has pressed Iran to allow women to attend qualifiers ahead of the World Cup in Qatar, has said it will "stand firm" in ensuring women have access to all soccer matches in Iran.
Human Rights Watch HRW called October 10 "a historic day in Iran," but also urged the authorities to overturn "this discriminatory rule so that Iranian women can exercise their basic right to attend a football match just like men. In a statementPhilip Luther of Amnesty International said that allowing only 3, tickets to be sold to women for the World Cup qualifier was "a cynical publicity stunt by the authorities intended to whitewash their image following the global outcry over Sahar Khodayari's tragic death.
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Thank you! Countries Show all countries. Women have taken to social media to demand more tickets, using the hashtag WakeUpFifa. It takes about minutes.