Eleven Iranian women have been banned from the Konishi Cup karate competition in Kalmar, Sweden, after they refused to remove their hijab.

The women ended up watching the competition from the stands at the beginning of August when head referee Javier Escalante declined to give them a special dispensation, a Swedish-based English-language online newspaper The Local said quoting the Sveriges Radio.

It added that the Iranian women had traveled to Sweden solely to take part in the championship.

Escalante pointed to karate rulebook, which states that all competitors are forbidden to wear jewelry, necklaces or headgear.


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