Iran’s ex-president tweets in defense of Serena Williams
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Backhanded compliment

Iran’s ex-president tweets in defense of Serena Williams

Ahmadinejad says ‘some people… haven’t realized the true meaning of freedom,’ after French Open bans US tennis star’s full-length catsuit

Serena Williams of the US catches a ball before serving to Australia's Ashleigh Barty during their second round match of the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium, May 31, 2018, in Paris. (AP Photo/ Alessandra Tarantino)
Serena Williams of the US catches a ball before serving to Australia's Ashleigh Barty during their second round match of the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium, May 31, 2018, in Paris. (AP Photo/ Alessandra Tarantino)

TEHRAN, Iran — Tennis star Serena Williams has received support over her recent catsuit controversy from the unlikeliest of sources — the former Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Concerns were raised this week when the French Tennis Federation’s president said that the full-length outfit Williams wore at this year’s French Open would no longer be allowed. Williams, who said she wore the outfit for health reasons, appeared to shrug off the decision.

“Why is the #FrenchOpen disrespecting @serenawilliams ? Unfortunately some people in all Countries including my Country, haven’t realized the true meaning of freedom,” tweeted Ahmadinejad on Monday.

Users on Twitter quickly pointed to the irony of Ahmadinejad commenting on freedom of attire having presided over a country that enforces an Islamic dress code and requires women to wear a headscarf in public.

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