Muslim athletes are now able to wear Hijab while playing Basketball


Muslim athletes are now able to wear Hijab while playing Basketball

The International Basketball Federation has agreed to allow athletes to wear head coverings after a growing number of calls from female Muslim basketball players around the world.

Muslim women basketball players have won their battle to wear hijab while playing the sport after basketball’s governing authority today approved a proposal to allow headgear to be worn by players.

The long-awaited decision came today, two and a half years after FIBA first started looking at revising its ban on headgear in September 2014.

The International Basketball Federation (FIBA) said in a statement: “the Central Board approved a proposal put forward by the Technical Commission for a new rule that will allow headgear to be worn by players. The new rule was developed in order to minimize the risk of injuries and preserve consistency of the color of the uniform.” Article 4.4.2 of FIBA rules, which campaigners fought to get overturned, had said: “Players shall not wear equipment (objects) that may cause injury to other players.” It says “headgear, hair accessories and jewelry” are not permitted. Today’s historic rule change will come into effect on 1 October 2017 and means basketball players will be now able to wear headgear including hijab.

Over the last two years there has been a growing number of Muslim female basketball players from around the world – from California in the US, to Gaborone in Botswana – demanding that FIBA allow head coverings to be worn for religious reasons in competition, with a petition that received 132,444 signatures and a social media campaign with the hashtag #FIBAAllowHijab.


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