The Saudi Arabian female judo entrant to the London Olympics will compete after all, as an acceptable form of headscarf has been agreed upon between the International Judo Federation and the International Olympic Committee.
An agreement between the IOC and IJF upon an acceptable form of headscarf allows Saudi athlete Wojdan Ali Seraj Abdulrahim Shaherkani to compete in the Olympics without breaching the Saudi edict that she must wear a hijab. Naharnet reported the design of the headscarf has been agreed on
Shaherkani's participation in the Olympics has been in doubt since the IJF took the decision to ban the hijab during competitive bouts. Digital Journal reported that Saudi Arabia threatened to withdraw from the Olympics if the ban stood, thus compromising the athletes' promise to abide by Sharia law and comply with the Islamic dress code.
The Wall Street Journal reported Ali Shaherkani, father and trainer of the Saudi judo athlete, said "I need my daughter to play. We are hoping to make new history for Saudi's women."
The participation of female Saudi athletes in the London Olympics has thus far garnered much controversy for this Olympic first. Digital Journal reported opponents of Saudi's two female athletes entering the Games branded them "the Prostitutes of the Olympics."
This was then followed by the ongoing debate over the hijab ban. Amongst Judo entrants the issue was not clear cut, but some denied the IJF's claim that wearing the hijab was dangerous, arguing instead that the worst thing that could happen is the hijab would fall off.