Paralympics: Iranian athlete refuses to shake hands with Duchess of Cambridge
Discus thrower Mehrdad Karam Zadeh finished second behind Briton Aled Davies in the F42-class discus on Sunday morning, and received his medal from the Duchess in the main stadium last night.
The Duchess was introduced to a huge cheer from a capacity crowd, but when she presented Zadeh with his medal it was noticeable that the 40 year-old athlete failed to shake her hand.
Bronze medallist Lezheng Wang and Davies both shook her hand after receiving their medals, with the Welshman exchanging words with the Duchess, who has been a regular spectator at the Paralympics.
The Iranian delegation in London were unavailable for comment when contacted this morning, but they have told Games organisers that Zadeh’s actions were not politically motivated.
According to sources the Iranian’s actions were based on gender, with cultural convention preventing a man from shaking the hand of a woman. (...)