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Iranian Chess Player Competes Without Hijab

Iranian Chess Player Competes Without Hijab

Iranian chess player ​Sara Khadem competes without her hijab, risking government's wrath
Lennart Ootes/FIDE/Reuters

Sara Khadem risks the wrath of the Iranian regime by not covering her hair.

By Celine Alkhaldi, CNN

(CNN) -- Iranian chess player Sara Khadem, also known as Sarasadat Khademalsharieh, took part in an international tournament without a hijab, Iranian news outlet Jamaran said on Tuesday.

Khadem is the latest sportswoman to appear at a competition without a hijab since anti-government protests erupted in September.

Khadem appeared in photos shared by Jamaran without her hijab, which is mandatory under Iran's dress code, during her participation at the FIDE World Rapid and Blitz Chess Championships in Almaty, Kazakhastan.

CNN reached out to Khadem's Instagram page for comment.

The 1997-born chess player is ranked 804 among active players globally and is ranked as number 10 in Iran, according to the International Chess Federation.

In October, Iranian climber Elnaz Rekabi competed in South Korea without her mandatory hijab on, later saying it had fallen off accidentally. However, it is unclear whether Rekabi's comments were made under duress.

In November, Iranian archer Parmida Ghasemi demonstrated her support for anti-government protests by removing her hijab during an awards ceremony in Tehran, later saying she did not notice it falling off.

Video shared on social media shows her allowing the headscarf to drop in what was widely interpreted as a show of support for nation-wide demonstrations.

Iran's deputy sports minister Maryam Kazemipour said in November that athletes who acted against Islamic norms "regretted" their actions afterward and "are looking for an opportunity to make up for their mistake."

The-CNN-Wire
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