Elnaz Rekabi comes back to Iran after climbing without a headscarf

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A huge crowd greeted mountaineer Elnaz Rekabi as she arrived back in Iran – celebrating a heroine for competing without a headscarf.

Wearing a baseball cap and hoodie – and looking nervous – she repeated a claim made under pressure that she forgot her headscarf “because I was busy putting on my shoes and gear”.

She insisted her return flight from the South Korea event went as planned, despite fears her phone and passport would be confiscated by government officials.

Around 200 people have died in protests against Iran’s strict head covering rule for women since Mahsa Amini, 22, died in custody after morality police arrested her for not wearing one last month.

Ms Rekabi, 33, said: “I returned to Iran reassured, but I had a lot of tension and stress. But thank God nothing has happened so far.”

Elnaz at Tehran Airport yesterday

Elnaz at Tehran Airport yesterday (Image: Borna News Agency)

Elnaz Rekabi climbed wearing a headscarf in South Korea

Elnaz climbed wearing a hijab in South Korea (Image: Rhea King/International Federation of Sport/AFP/Getty Images)

A fan gave her flowers, then she was driven slowly in a van from Tehran airport while supporters chanted her name.

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https://metro.co.uk/2022/10/20/elnaz-rekabi-arrives-back-in-iran-after-climbing-without-wearing-hijab-17598721/ Elnaz Rekabi comes back to Iran after climbing without a headscarf

Justin Scacco

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