US Angers Iran After Removing Their Flag Emblem From Social Media

Iran has called for the United States to be ousted from the 2022 World Cup after U.S. Soccer removed Iran’s flag emblem on a social media post, CNN reported.

On Saturday, the U.S. shared a graphic listing the tournament’s Group B standings, including England, Iran, the United States and Wales. However, the post featured Iran’s national flag without the emblem of the Islamic Republic.

U.S. Soccer told CNN that the edited graphic was only intended to stay up for 24 hours in an attempt to “support for the women in Iran fighting for basic human rights.”

Moreover, the edited flag “was a one-time graphic” and US Soccer has “the main flag” on its “website and other places.”

The post featuring the emblem-less flag has since been deleted and US Soccer has added the emblem back to social media posts shared on Sunday.

“We look forward to a peaceful and competitive match on the field,” the State Department told CNN. “The United States continues to find ways to support the Iranian people in the face of state-sponsored violence against women and a brutal crackdown against peaceful protestors.”

The State Department told CNN it was not involved with US Soccer’s decision to edit Iran’s flag.

In response, Iran state media called for a 10-game suspension for the United States and immediate disqualification from the tournament.

Iran state-affiliated media outlet Tasnim News Agency addressed the “distorted image” in a series of tweets on Sunday. The post accused alleged that the United States had “breached” FIFA charter guidelines and suggested “a 10-game suspension is the appropriate penalty.”

“Team #USA should be kicked out of the #WorldCup2022,” the tweet stated.

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The agency cited FIFA’s own rules against “any person who offends the dignity or integrity of a country” and the subsequent sanction of “a suspension lasting at least ten matches” or “any other appropriate disciplinary measure.”

Finally, the agency stated that Iranian Football’s legal advisor “says the sports association will file a complaint against the U.S. Soccer Team to FIFA’s Ethics Committee.”

Pablo Morano/BSR Agency/GettyIran and the United States will compete against one another on Tuesday in a critical Group B match, with the winner moving on to the knockout round.

Meanwhile, Iran’s players competing in the World Cup have protested their country during the tournament. Just before their opening match against England, all 11 players on Iran’s team remained silent during the presentation of their country’s national anthem.

The group stood with their arms around one another, in a show of support for protestors as Iran continues to see civil unrest in response to the death of Mahsa Amini, the 22-year-old citizen who died under police custody.

Team captain Ehsan Hajsafi spoke about the current unrest in his country during a media availability on Sunday. “We have to accept that the conditions in our country are not right and our people are not happy.”