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Sport Iranian Olympic medalist defects

13:25  14 january  2020
13:25  14 january  2020 Source:   msn.com

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The only woman to win an Olympic medal for Iran has defected to Europe claiming that the Islamic Republic mistreats its athletes, AFP reported. It was not clear which European country she defected to, though Iranian media reported that she had gone to the Netherlands. Alizadeh is not the first

NICOSA, Cyprus — Iran ’s only female Olympic medallist Kimia Alizadeh announced Saturday she has permanently left her country, citing the “hypocrisy” of a system she claims humiliates athletes while using them for political ends. “Should I start with hello, goodbye, or condolences

Kimia Alizadeh wearing a red shirt© Photo by Amin Mohammad Jamali/Getty Images

On Saturday Iran’s only female Olympic medalist Kimia Alizadeh, 21, announced that she was defecting from her birth-country. Alizadeh, who competes in taekwondo, won a bronze medal for Iran during the 2016 Rio Olympics.

According to AFP Alizadeh announced her defection on social media and criticised Iran’s political system, citing “hypocrisy”, “lying”, and “injustice”. In her posts she wrote that, “I am one of the millions of oppressed women in Iran with whom they have been playing for years.”

“I wore whatever they told me to wear. I repeated everything she told me to say,” continued Alizadeh, referring to veils that women are ordered to wear in public in Iran.

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Sole Iranian female Olympic medalist Kimia Alizadeh defects from country, she says originally appeared on abcnews.go.comKimia Alizadeh, the sole woman to ever have won a medal at the Olympics for the country of Iran , has defected from the country and moved to Europe

The only female athlete to win an Olympic medal for Iran announced this weekend that she had defected from the nation because of The Iranian news outlet also reported that Ms. Alizadeh planned to compete in this summer’s Olympics in Tokyo, but noted that she would not represent Iran .

Alizadeh was training for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics in the Netherlands when she announced her intention to never return to the country.

The taekwondo competitor announced her decision to leave Iran shortly after news broke of the downing of Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 (PS752). That airliner crashed on January 8th after being struck by a missile launched by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). All of the 176 people on board the plane were killed.

Iran’s government has admitted to accidentally shooting down the plane, which was carrying 82 Iranian nationals and 63 Canadian nationals, along with people from the Ukraine, Sweden, Afghanistan and United Kingdom.

The downing of PS752 happened on the same night Iran launched a missile attack against US occupied bases in Iraq. This was in response to the US drone-killing of Iranian general Qassim Soleimani.

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The only female athlete to win an Olympic medal for Iran announced this weekend that she had defected from the nation because of The Iranian news outlet also reported that Ms. Alizadeh planned to compete in this summer’s Olympics in Tokyo, but noted that she would not represent Iran .

Iranian Olympic medalist Kimia Alizadeh says she has permanently left Iran , citing oppression by authorities. Iranian parliamentarian Abdolkarim Hosseinzadeh had demanded answers, accusing "incompetent officials" of allowing Iran 's "human capital to flee" the country.

The tragedy of PS752 has been met with protests and civil unrest inside of Iran. Iranians had already been protesting their government prior to that incident and the killing of Soleimani. Anti-government protests have been held in Iran since November motivated by an increase in fuel prices and economic hardships.

In addition to those two issues the protests are viewed as part of an overall campaign of dissent against the Islamic Republic, which has existed — in varying scales and intensities — since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

The Islamic Revolution installed a theocracy in Iran, which has since governed the country using strict interpretations of Islam. Post-Revolution Iran has been criticized by both Iranian and international human rights groups for its oppression of women, persecution of LGBTQIA people, imprisonment and torture of dissidents, and the execution of minors.

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