Global perspective Human stories

Sports and gender equality

Soccer gives a voice to Afghan female athletes

Soccer is being used as a platform to talk about women’s issues in a male-dominated society, an Afghan female athlete has said.

Khalida Popal, a former captain and founding member of the country’s first women’s national soccer team, fled in 2011 after receiving death threats.

People would sometimes throw trash during games, even going as far as calling them “prostitutes,” she told participants at a UN event on sports and gender equality.