Iranian Soccer Players Wear Green Wristbands To Support Mousavi
Iran took on South Korea in a World Cup 2010 Qualifier today, and several players were spotted wearing green wristbands during the match. Green is the color used by supporters of Mir-Hossein Mousavi, the opposition candidate most people believe was robbed in the recent election in Iran.
Since the match was watched by millions of people in Iran, their statement of solidarity was effective and courageous. Among these millions was most likely Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who is a known soccer fanatic.
The players were not the only ones who protested. From Time:
Outside the stadium in Seoul, before the game kicked off, dozens of Iranian fans staged a mini-protest of their own, unfurling a banner that read “Go to Hell, Dictator” and chanting, “Compatriots, we will be with you to the end with the same heart.” The banner was spotted again during the game, along with signs reading “Where Is My Vote?” (a slogan widely displayed on June 16 during street demonstrations in Tehran) and Iranian national flags with “Free Iran” written across them.
Some people will say that political statements have no place in sports, but given how difficult it is right now to get a message in or out of Iran, there’s nothing wrong with players showing some subtle support for democracy and freedom of speech. If they encounter any trouble when they get home, they can just say they were wearing one of the Iranian national colors.
In news that seems secondary at this point, Iran ended up giving up a late goal to draw 1-1, ending the country’s World Cup dream.
Soccer Protest: Iran’s Players Show Support for Mousavi [Time]
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