Iranian protesters kicked out of football friendly in Austria by report

Police evicted two protesters from Iran’s international friendly against Uruguay on Friday in Austria after they entered the match allegedly behind closed doors. The pair were talking about the death of Mahsa Amini, the 22-year-old woman who died in police custody in Iran earlier this month after being accused of inappropriately wearing a headscarf, according to ESPN’s Mark Ogden.

Police approached the two men during the first half of the game at NV Arena and asked them to hand over a sign that said Amini was “murdered by the police of the Islamic Republic of Iran”. When the protesters refused, Austrian police chased them out of the stadium, according to Ogden.

Amini’s death sparked widespread protests in Iran, as women were seen removing and burning their state-mandated head scarves, according to the Associated Press. Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said the circumstances of Amini’s death would be “closely” investigated after Iranian police said she died of a heart attack.

As a result of rising tensions in Iran, the country’s government has pushed for the national team’s friendly against Uruguay to be played privately to avoid the possibility of further protests. Still, fans from both teams were allowed to enter the venue, with the main stands seating approximately 400 spectators, according to Ogden.

Iran won Friday’s game over Uruguay 1-0.

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