Sajjad Ganjzadeh, Iran’s Olympic Gold Medalist, has spoken out against his home country’s pulling of athletes from competition for political purposes. The Iranian posted on Instagram a condemnation of Iran’s pulling of athletes from competition in threat of competing against Israeli athletes.
In a now-deleted Instagram post had Ganjzadeh said in his post, “We cannot tolerate this anymore. Not competing is more difficult than competing.” Iran has long held athletes from competition when faced with the possibility of facing an Israeli athlete.
Sajjad Ganjzadeh and the Olympic Gold
For Sajjad Ganjzadeh to stand up to Iran while living inside the country takes courage. But maybe he believes his gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games in karate. His fight was controversial as Ganjzadeh was knocked out by Saudi Arabia’s Tareg Hamedi. But the strike was deemed illegal and Ganjzadeh was handed the victory and the medal.
Ganjzadeh has also won gold at several Karate1 Premier events, the Asian Games and won silver at the World Championships in 2018.
Regardless, Ganjzadeh is standing up to the regime’s unsportsmanlike policy against Israeli athletes. Most notably, Saeid Mollaei was held from competition in the sport of Judo due to a potential matchup with Israel’s Sagi Muki. After fleeing the country and seeking refuge, Mollaei went on to take silver in the Olympics for the country of Mongolia.
Iran, of course, has a long history with the mistreatment of not only it’s athletes, but it’s citizens as well. Executions, long imprisonments, and threats from the regime have been around for years and doesn’t seem to be letting up despite cries from
In September of 2020, the world had it’s attention brought to Iran’s cruelty to it’s citizens as it sentenced Navid Afkari, a wrestler from Iran, to death. The entire combat sports world called for mercy for Afkari with even UFC president Dana White and then-president Donald Trump calling for his release. Despite the pleas, Afkari was executed.
Since then, Iran has arrested Reza Tabrizi, Mohammad Javad Vafaei, and executed Mehdi Ali Hosseini, and Ali Mutairi.
I’ve covered Iran for some time now. Please brush up on all the stories below to know just how bad the country can be.
- Majid Jamali Fashi: Kickboxing, Wikileaks, and Nuclear Assassinations in Iran
- The Story of Saeid Mollaei: Iran’s Anti-Zionism in Sport
- Navid Afkari Sentenced to Two Death Sentences for Fake Crimes, White/Trump Step In
- Navid Afkari Executed This Morning By Iranian Government
- Reza Tabrizi Faces Death Penalty For Alleged Crimes in Iran
- Reza Tabrizi Instagram Account Seized By Iranian Government, Screenshots From His Now-Private Profile
- Iranian Wrestler Mehdi Ali Hosseini Sentenced To Death In Iran
- Mehdi Ali Hosseini Latest Athlete Executed By Iranian Government
- More Details Surrounding The Murder of Navid Afkari
- Iran Executed Boxing Coach, Ali Mutairi, Torture and Forced Confession Suspected
- Khaled Pirzadeh, Iranian Body Builder, Stitches Lips Shut In Protest of Imprisonment Mistreatment
- Sardar Pashaei and United For Navid Call For IOC Action Against Iran
- IJF Gives Iran 4 Year Ban Over Saeid Mollaei Case
- Vahid Afkari, brother of Navid, Threatened with Execution in Iran Prison
- Family of Navid Afkari Beaten And Arrested By Iranian Regime
- Saeid Mollaei, Persecuted Iranian, Medals Silver In Judo Olympics
- Shahin Naseri, whistleblower in Navid Afkari case, killed in prison
- Kimia Alizadeh: From Iranian Olympian to Refugee
- Iran regime sentenced Mohammad Javad Vafaei to death for protests in 2019