Iran team may face arrest back home for not singing national anthem at FIFA World Cup match in Qatar

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Doha: The Iranian Football team refused to sing the National anthem ahead of their opening FIFA World Cup 2022 game against England at the Khalifa Stadium as a mark of support for the anti-government protests back home. Now, the Iranian team is facing possible arrest as a consequence for the same, a report said.

David E Guinn, a University of Albany research professor of international law and human rights noted that ‘not only the Iranian players but their families could face significant consequences including detention and/or arrest because of their stand in the match, as per Newsweek.

“The Iranian regime has clearly demonstrated its determination and ruthlessness in seeking to quell that unrest, particularly in public settings,” said David E. Guinn.

“While the public standing of the players might shield them for a time, particularly while they are competing in the World Cup, that standing will also make them of greater concern to the regime. They don’t want prominent individuals stepping forward to feed the flames,” he added.Notably, a part of the large contingent of Iran’s fanbase inside the stadium was also heard booing the anthem. Fans were also seen with signs inside the Khalifa International Stadium that read ‘Freedom for Iran’ and ‘Woman, Life, Freedom’ in support of the massive protests back home. Protests broke out in Iran on a huge scale following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in the custody of Morality Police for allegedly violating the country’s strict hijab laws. Over hundreds, mostly youngsters have been killed in the crackdown on protests by the Iranian authorities so far and thousands have been detained.

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