A collective including former world boxing champion Mahyar Monshipour and Iranian Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi wrote to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to demand the exclusion of Iran from the Paris Olympics for violation of the principle of non-discrimination in sport.
The letter sent to the IOC at the end of July requests the exclusion of Iran on the grounds that it does not respect the Olympic charter which affirms that "the practice of sport is a human right" and that there must be no of “discrimination of any kind, in particular on grounds of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, language, religion, political or other opinions, national or social origin, property, birth or any other situation,” explained lawyer Frédéric Thiriez, who made the request one year before the Paris Olympics, during a press conference.
He added that he was “working on a referral to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS, which decides disputes in sport, editor’s note)”. A petition on change.org is also about to be launched.
In this letter to the IOC, of which AFP had a copy, a parallel is highlighted with the exclusion of South Africa in 1970.
Mr. Thiriez indicated that the IOC had responded “rest assured, we are closely monitoring the situation in Iran”. The collective wants at least a ban on Iranian athletes from the next Olympics in disciplines that are prohibited for women: wrestling, boxing, swimming, volleyball, gymnastics.
Former wrestler and member of the wrestling federation, Shirin Shirzad, a refugee in the Netherlands, testified by videoconference: “we dream of practicing our sport normally,” she explained.
In Iran, women practice “in apartments or basements”, added the former French boxer of Iranian origin Mahyar Monshipour, alongside the former Secretary of State of the Fillon government and jurist Jeannette Bougrab.
At the end of August, two associations filed a complaint in Paris against Ghafoor Kargari, Iranian president of the National Paralympic Committee 2024 then visiting France, whom they accuse of torture and suspect of crimes against humanity.
Just a year ago, the death of the young Iranian Kurd Mahsa Amini after her arrest by the moral police for non-compliance with strict Islamic clothing obligations led to months of demonstrations, repressed in bloodshed and arrests.