Iraqi referee suspended for tattoo

Naja Ram, chairman of the Iraqi Football Association's Referees Committee, announced the temporary suspension of international referee Mohammad Tariq Ahmed because the committee asked him not to reveal his tattoos multiple times during the game.

Naja said, “More than once we asked international referee Mohammad Tariq to cover his tattoos during matches, but he refused to do so. It is true that these things may not be prohibited by law, but they are not prohibited. This is our Tradition and custom can sometimes put pressure on the atmosphere of a match, so we decided to temporarily suspend him, which is not so much a disciplinary measure as an opportunity for correction and review.

The international referee, who is the son of Tariq Ahmed, secretary of the Iraqi Football Association and former chairman of the referees committee, has a tattoo of a lion on his left thigh and a map of Iraq on his chest.

Ram added: “International referee Mohammad Tariq Ahmed is a talented and important referee. He has a great future in arbitration and we hope that he will not be overlooked in the future because of these performances. “

Referee Mohammed Tariq said: “The tattoos on my body do not contain racist content. The lion tattoo and the map of Iraq represent the symbolic meaning of Iraqis.”

He added: “The Iraqi constitution does not prohibit this, let alone the legal text approved by FIFA in this regard, as long as the tattoo does not represent any racist message. I have lodged a complaint with the Iraqi Football Association and I will File a lawsuit in one of the courts in this regard.”

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