Samira Zargari: Iranian women's alpine ski coach barred from travelling to world championships by husband
Iranian women's alpine ski coach, Samira Zargari, has been barred from leaving the country to travel to the world championships in Italy by her husband according to Iranian media; Iranian law states husbands can stop their wives from travelling outside of the country
By Associated Press
Last Updated: 18/02/21 10:51am
The Iranian women's alpine ski team flew on Wednesday to Italy for the world championships without their coach, whose husband has barred her from leaving the country, Iranian media reports.
The reports by the semi-official ISNA news agency and the pro-reform Shargh daily did not provide any details as to why Samira Zargari's husband had not allowed her to leave. Iran's ski federation also did not offer any information.
Under Iranian law, husbands can stop their wives from traveling outside of the country.
Zargari is not the first married athlete whose husband prevented her from leaving Iran. In 2015, footballer Niloufar Ardalan missed the Asian Cup tournament in futsal - an indoor version of soccer - after her husband confiscated her passport in a domestic dispute.
Women's sports largely disappeared from Iran after the country's 1979 Islamic Revolution. Over time, however, women's sports gained in popularity, especially football.
Social customs still come into the game though, as the country's football team plays their games with players' hair covered by traditional headscarves, or hijabs.
FIFA overturned a yearlong ban against players wearing hijabs in 2012.
Four Iranian skiers are entered for the women's giant slalom race on Thursday at the world championships in Cortina d'Ampezzo: Atefeh Ahmadi, Sadaf Savehshemshaki, Forough Abbasi and Marjan Kalhor.
They are part of a 99-skier field for a race in which the favourites are Marta Bassino and Federica Brignone of host Italy,