Sara Khadem: an Iranian woman takes part in an international chess tournament without compulsory hijab
Iranian chess player Sara Khadem, also known as Sarasadat Khademalsharieh, participated in an international tournament without a hijab, Iranian media outlet Jamaran reported on Tuesday.
Khadem is the latest sportswoman to compete without a hijab since anti-government protests erupted in September.
Khadem appeared in photos shared by Jamaran without her hijab, which is compulsory under Iran’s dress code, while participating in the FIDE World Rapid and Blitz Chess Championships in Almaty, Kazakhstan.
CNN has reached out to Khadem’s Instagram page for comment.
The 1997-born chess player is ranked 804 among active players in the world and is ranked number 10 in Iran, according to the International Chess Federation.
In October, Iranian mountaineer Elnaz Rekabi competed in South Korea without her mandatory hijab, later claiming it fell accidentally. However, it is unclear if Rekabi’s comments were made under duress.
In November, Iranian archer Parmida Ghasemi showed her support for anti-government protests by removing her hijab at an award ceremony in Tehran, later saying she hadn’t noticed.
A video shared on social media shows her dropping the headscarf in what has been widely interpreted as a show of support for nationwide protests.
Iran’s deputy sports minister, Maryam Kazemipour, said in November that athletes who acted against Islamic norms had “regretted” their actions afterwards and were “looking for an opportunity to make up for their mistake”.