Elham Asghari (b.1981) is the first female swimming record holder for open sea swimming in Iran. On June 2013 Asghari set a new breaststroke record in Noshahr, in the Caspian Sea. She reports that she faced an unexpected problem, however, in registering this new record and is making a public appeal for support.
Officials have prevented the registry of the 20k swim record, reducing it to first one amount and then conceding to another but not agreeing the 20k measurement. For Asghari, who says she finds the outfit cumbersome as it adds 6kg weight to her swim and is even painful, this is a challenge she can handle better than the record not being straight. Until Ashgari’s record, there was no such a thing as officially approved swimming suits for women by the Ministry of Sports, Ashgari’s is one she created herself using the internet for research. Elham Asghari’s costume however is in accordance with the rules of Islam, but it still considered unacceptable as when she exited the water, apparently her figure was visible, making the registering of this record against Islam and the law, Ministers have said.
Ashgari states “I swam from the women’s beach. There weren’t any men there. “
Since the launch of her pressure campaign, millions of Iranian Facebook users have shown support and sympathy; Elham thanks them all in this video message.
Video: Farvartish Rezvaniyeh