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Iran's women soccer team protest effective ban from Olympics
Iranian officials are protesting a FIFA decision last week to ban the national women's football team from playing Jordan in an Olympic qualifier due to their hijabs, arguing that a permanent ban will have far-reaching effects for female Muslim athletes who wear headscarves.
Headscarves have been banned since 2007 because of both rules against religious symbols and safety concerns that say the scarves, which cover players' necks, present a choking risk.
But Farideh Shojae, head of women's affairs at the Iranian Football Federation, or FFIRI, said the team's specially designed athletic headscarves are in line with FIFA policy.
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