Iran’s wrestling officials resigned in a collective move

According to Mikrofonnews Agency (MHA), The head of Iran’s wrestling federation has resigned after criticizing authorities for letting players be punished because of the country’s ban on athletes competing against Israel.

Rasoul Khadem, an Olympic gold medalist, was re-elected as the Iranian Wrestling Federation head only two months ago. Other council members have also reportedly resigned. Iran does not recognize the state of Israel. Wrestler Alireza Karimachiani was banned for six months after throwing a match to avoid an Israeli opponent last year.

Earlier this month, Mr Khadem criticised Iranian authorities for their stance on Israeli opponents, and called for a “fundamental solution” to the ongoing problem. “Forcing an athlete to accept defeat or run around all night looking for a doctor’s note is not right,” he said.

He suggested he was forced from the post in a cryptic letter posted on the body’s website on Wednesday. After news of Khadem’s departure, the councils for freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestling announced they were resigning en masse, the Iranian Students News Agency (ISNA) reported.