A safe space for Sudanese women to enjoy the World Cup

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STORY: These Sudanese women are watching the World Cup in a dedicated safe safe

Location: Khartoum, Sudan

The unique initiative has been set up by a women’s rights group

in an effort to offer a safe space for female soccer fans in the conservative country

(Samar Tag al-Ser / Al-Haresat member) “‘Let's watch together’ is the slogan for the World Cup watching sessions at 'al-Haresat' initiative. We wanted to give women the opportunity to watch games in a special venue that is comfortable for them, given that there is no such thing for women. We wanted to give them this space without any worries and at the same time to show society that there are women who love soccer and understand it very well."

Under former president Omar al-Bashir, Sudan was governed using a strict interpretation of sharia law

and largely neglected women’s participation in sports

After al-Bashir was ousted in 2019, the country launched a women’s soccer league

a move that has allowed female players to push for wider acceptance