Iran players refuse to sing national anthem as fans jeer before England World Cup clash amid protests

Iran players refuse to sing national anthem as fans jeer before England World Cup clash amid protests

Iran’s players did not sing the national anthem ahead of their World Cup opener against England in Qatar, while sections of their supporters booed.

The actions come in the wake of ongoing unrest in Iran, with the death of Mahsa Amini sparking widespread protests in September.

The 22-year-old died in custody having been detained for allegedly failing to follow the country’s Islamic dress code.

Iran Human Rights claimed this weekend that at least 378 people have been killed by security forces in the ongoing nationwide protests, with over 40 allegedly killed by state security forces in the last week alone.

Speaking before the England match in Qatar, Iran captain Ehsan Hajsafi said: “Before anything else, I would like to express my condolences to all of the bereaved families in Iran.

“They should know that we are with them, we support them and we sympathise with them.”

The Iran players elected to then not sing the national anthem at the Khalifa International Stadium on Monday, while boos could be heard from some sections of the crowd.