Iran Says Women Will Be Allowed Into Stadiums ‘Soon’

(Bloomberg) -- Women will be allowed into stadiums across Iran to watch soccer matches "as soon as possible," the country’s vice-president for parliamentary affairs told the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency.

Hossein Ali Amiri said preparations such as installing separate entry gates and separate women’s areas were underway at big stadiums, IRNA quoted him as saying. He confirmed that women will be allowed attend an Oct. 10 World Cup playoff between Iran and Cambodia, as required by FIFA, the tournament’s organizers.

The measures come after a public outcry over a woman who died last week after she set herself on fire to protest a possible jail sentence for sneaking into a soccer match earlier this year. Women are banned by Iran’s security forces from attending games, but there is no law explicitly prohibiting their presence.

FIFA said in a statement earlier this week that it will make a site visit to Tehran "shortly" to assess Iran’s preparations for next month’s qualifier match.

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