Iranian Powerlifter Seeking Asylum In Norway Over Message On T-Shirt

A powerlifter from Iran fled for his life after he was caught wearing a shirt his government didn’t like.

Amir Assadollahzadeh won a medal at the World Club League Championship in Norway in November, but because he did not wear a t-shirt honoring the late Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ Quds Force commander Qasem Soleimani after his victory, he was viewed as a rebel by his authoritarian government (the shirt he chose to wear honored the healthcare workers in Iran who worked through COVID).

Soleimani was an armed terrorist. As the commander for Iran’s military, he was responsible for the death of thousands of U.S. soldiers and was intensifying a terrorist presence in Syria and Iran. Trump’s then-President Donald Trump directed an airstrike that killed him on January 3, 2020.

Apparently, Assadollahzadeh was told he could make up for his “brazen” offense by wearing a shirt with Soleimani’s likeness plastered on it at the International Powerlifting Federation World Championships in November, but refused, quit the team and fled for his life after the WCLC. He now seeks asylum in Norway.

“I refused to wear the shirt and I was confronted with threats: If you refuse to wear the shirt, upon your return to Iran, both you and your family will face problems,” Assadollahzadeh said.

Unfortunately, Assadollahzadeh is not the only Iranian athlete suffering from the grip of Iran’s politics. Breitbart says that

“In 2018, the Iranian water polo player Amir Dehdari was arrested and brutally flogged for refusing to meet with Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei. In October, the Iranian boxer Omid Ahmadi Safa failed to turn up to compete for the gold medal at the World Kickboxing championship final in Italy after a video surfaced of him with Israeli athletes.”

Take a long, hard look at this article for athletes who are interested in learning more about the real effects of oppression by government. Americans allow athletes to support groups that are similar to domestic terrorists (BLM). They can wear NFL cleats which permit them voice support for any cause and they should avoid meeting with the president after they have won a title.

Your life and family may be at risk in Iran if your t-shirt is not right, you associate with the wrong person, or you don’t show up for the President’s call.

Perhaps all Americans, and not only athletes, should be grateful that America is a country where we can dress as we please.

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