Nike Boycotts Iran’s World Cup Players, Citing US Sanctions
The world's largest footwear maker, U.S. apparel company Nike, says it will not provide shoes to players of Iran's national football team for the World Cup because of U.S. sanctions.
In a statement emailed to VOA Persian on Monday, Nike said it based its decision on the Trump administration's plan to re-impose U.S. sanctions on Iran in the coming months. President Donald Trump announced the re-imposition of sanctions last month when he withdrew the U.S. from the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers.
"The sanctions mean that, as a U.S. company, we cannot provide shoes to players in the Iran national team at this time," the Nike statement said.
A Reuters report published May 30 quoted a Nike spokesman as saying none of the Iranian players at the World Cup, which begins next week, will be wearing its shoes. The report also quoted the spokesman as saying: "This has no relation to any political situation."
Nike's main rival, Germany-based Adidas, is providing the jerseys of the Iranian team, also known as Team Melli.
Football's world governing body FIFA does not regulate the shoe brand choices of players at the World Cup. A competing team can feature players wearing football shoes, or cleats, made by different brands, but all of that team's players must wear the same brand of jersey under FIFA rules.
Pentagon Watchdog Opens Probe of White House Physician Ronny Jackson
The U.S. Defense Department’s inspector general has opened an investigation into misconduct allegations against White House physician Ronny Jackson, the inspector general's office said in a statement on Monday.
President Donald Trump nominated Jackson to be veterans affairs secretary in March, but Jackson withdrew from consideration a month later amid allegations he had overseen a hostile work environment as White House physician, drank on the job and allowed the overprescribing of drugs. Jackson has denied the allegations.
Democrats on the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee have said more than 20 current and former colleagues had come forward to accuse Jackson of prescribing himself medications, getting drunk at a Secret Service party and wrecking a government vehicle.
After withdrawing his nomination for the VA post, Jackson stopped serving as Trump’s lead physician.