Women have now been granted the right to ride motorcycles on tracks and compete in events, Iran’s young journalists club website reported. The vice president of the Motorcycle and Automobile Federation of the Islamic
Republic of Iran (MAFIRI) Hossein Shahriari, said that due to coordinated efforts over seven months, a licence for women driving motorcycles in sports events (not the streets, note) was obtained.
“Now, there’s no need for illegal activities of such kind. They have official permission for motocross.”
Women in Iran can drive cars, unlike in other Islamic states such as Saudi Arabia, and have even produced prospective champions such as Nora Naraghi (also an Olympic taekwondo contender).
Leading motorcycle manufacturer Bana Industrial Group even invited women to partake of their motorbike riding classes, to a massive response. Tehran is an especially congested city, and no doubt the motorobikes offer a solution out of reach for women since the 1979 Islamic turnover in Iran.
Years back, Faezeh Hashemi, daughter of former president Rafsanjani, was critcised by Islamic hardliners when she called for women to be allowed to ride bicycles and to dress as they liked in public.