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Iranian chess referee spars with governing body

STORY: “Initially, I didn't choose to be a political person, but it happened in my life that I have to be the voice of Iranian people.”

Location: London

This Iranian chess referee says a gesture

of solidarity has caused a feud

with the game’s governing body

Shohreh Bayat wore a ‘Women, Life, Freedom’

T-shirt at a tournament in October

soon after protests over Mahsa Amini’s death began

(Shohreh Bayat, Chess arbiter)

“I don't think it is normal to stay quiet about this. This is a big human rights matter, and I think if we stay quiet about these things, we cannot forgive ourselves.”

Bayat says the move angered International

Chess Federation President Arkady Dvorkovich

She accuses Dvorkovich, a former Russian

deputy prime minister, of succumbing to geopolitics

“I found it unfair because from one hand, there was no dress code rule for the tournament, for arbiters.” /// “There were three words, ‘Women. Life. Freedom.’, and none of these words are, I mean, negative or something. These are such beautiful words about women's rights and human rights.”