Iran’s World Cup footballers have allegedly been threatened that their family members may be imprisoned or tortured if they fail to “behave” during their match against USA.
According to reports, Iran’s players were brought to a meeting with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) after they refused to sing their national anthem in their opening tournament match against England.
That move came amid nationwide protests in Iran that has resulted in the killing of so many children and teenage protesters by Iranian security agencies.
Iran's anthem expresses its desire for the Islamic Republic to live forever and Saman Ghoddos, the only Iranian in the Premier League, recently told a UK publication that it was right for players to speak up in support of those who are calling for change - regardless of potential repercussions.
Also just last week, former Iran international footballer Voria Ghafouri was arrested on the grounds of having “tarnished the reputation of the national team and spreading propaganda against the state."
The arrest came one day before Iran played Wales, a match during which their players sang their national anthem.
A Tuesday, November 29 report from CNN now alleges that Iran’s footballers were informed their families would face “violence and and torture” if they did not sing the national anthem or if they joined any political protest against the Tehran regime while at the world cup.
They claim that “a large number of Iranian security officers” have been brought to Qatar to monitor player’s behaviour. They are not allowed to speak to foreigners or spend company in the time of fans outside of their environment.
The report also alleged that the Iranian regime have paid for a number of “actors” to be present in the stands of Iran’s World Cup matches and that this number will rise into the thousands for the nation’s final group game against USA on Tuesday.
“There are a large number of Iranian security officers in Qatar collecting information and monitoring the players." A source reportedly told CNN
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