Nowruz Mubarak

Happy New Year, if you happen to be of Persian, Afghan or (many parts of) central Asian origin. To celebrate, here are some images of women athletes from Afghanistan, who have lost the ability to compete since the return of the Taliban to power, but not their desire. I found the protest photos of them in burqas, with their gear, to be very moving. Some have escaped Afghanistan and are continuing their athletic careers. Nowruz Mubarak to all of them: here’s hoping the next year will be better for all women who are unable to participate in sport.

Kimia Yousofi of Afghanistan is now living in Australia. Yousofi, shown running in a black track suit and hijab, was flag bearer for Afghanistan at the Tokyo Olympics.
Image: Christian Petersen/Getty Images