Kimia Alizadeh, an Iranian defector, will face off against athlete from Iran in Tokyo Olympics

A member of the Refugee Olympic Team will be facing off against an Iranian opponent in the taekwondo qualifying round in Tokyo.

Kimia Alizadeh, who left Iran in 2020, will go up against Nahid Kiyani Chandeh in the 57-kilogram event on Sunday. She accused the Iranian government of “lying” and “injustice” toward Iranian athletes, adding all she wants is “taekwondo, security and a happy and healthy life,” according to AFP. Alizadeh was the first Iranian woman to win an Olympic medal when she won the bronze at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games. She was 18 at the time.

She was scrutinized for wearing the mandatory hijab headscarf, which she had to wear at the Olympics. Alizadeh then left Iran to move to Germany. “I have a great feeling to have made a decision for my life that would definitely change my future,” she said last year in Germany. Alizadeh promised the Iranian people she would always remain a “child of Iran.”

Alizadeh was selected for the 29-athlete Refugee Olympic Team last month. The two-time world championship medalist and 2014 Youth Olympics champion needed an invitation to join the 16 athletes who qualified for the 57kg featherweight category at the Tokyo Games. The winner at the Makuhari Messe near Tokyo will advance to the round of 16 and face defending champion Jade Jones of Britain less than two hours later.



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Paul, 37, is from Scotland in the UK, but currently lives and works in Bangkok. Paul has worked in different industries such as telemarketing, retail, hospitality, farming, insurance, and teaching, where he works now. He teaches at an all-girls High School in Bangkok. “It’s a lot of work, but I love my job.” Paul has an active interest in politics. His reason for writing for FBA is to offer people the facts and allow them to make up their own minds. Whilst he believes opinion columns have their place, it is also important that people can have accurate news with no bias.

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