FIFA has lifted a five-year ban on women wearing headscarves during games, allowing Muslim women to participate in football games with hijab if they choose to.
The Associated Press reports that the International Football Association Board announced the new development today, after FIFA’s medical committee concluded that two scarf designs submitted for examination proved to be of no threat to the safety of female players.
FIFA announced today: “Currently there is no medical literature concerning injuries as a result of wearing a headscarf.”
The two approved designs use quick-release Velcro fasteners and light magnets to tie the scarves below the chin.
The final design and fabric of the headscarves have not been determined yet and, according to the report, they will be announced at the annual IFAB meeting in October.
The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) reported that one of the two designs approved for headscarves was by Elham Seyyed Javad, an Iranian resident of Montreal.
In 2007, FIFA announced that any equipment threatening the safety of players or exhibiting religious significance was prohibited from being used during games.
Last June, in the qualifying rounds for the London Olympic Games, Iranian women had to forfeit their games because their headscarves were deemed in violation of FIFA regulations.
The Jordanian Prince Ali, who is also vice-president of FIFA, led a year-long campaign to overturn the ban on headscarves so that Muslim women from countries like Iran and Saudi Arabia, where headscarves are mandatory for female players in public, can compete in FIFA games.
[photo: Press TV]