The Iranian embassy in Spain has “strongly denied” reports that Cristiano Ronaldo could be “sentenced to 99 lashes for adultery”.
This comes after Iranian media, according to Sports Worldclaimed that lawyers in the country had filed a complaint against the Al-Nassr attacker after photos were published online showing him hugging international painter Fatima Hamimi.
The incident took place while the Portuguese superstar was visiting the country in September, but the Iranian embassy in Spain refuted claims that the footballer would be sanctioned if he returned to the country, instead supporting the gesture made by Ronaldo.
An embassy statement said: “We strongly deny any court decision handed down against an international athlete in Iran.
“It is concerning that the publication of such baseless news could overshadow crimes against humanity and war crimes against the oppressed Palestinian nation.
Iran has denied reports that Cristiano Ronaldo (right) could be sentenced for hugging painter Fatima Hamimi (left)
The Iranian embassy in Spain instead praised the actions of the Portuguese superstar
Ronaldo has been in a long-term relationship with Spanish model Georgina Rodriguez
“It should be noted that Cristiano Ronaldo visited Iran on September 18-19 to play an official football match and was very well received by the population and authorities.
“His sincere and human meeting with Fatemeh Hamami was also greeted and admired by both the population and the country’s sports authorities.”
Ronaldo, who is dating Spanish model Georgina Rodriguez, traveled to the Iranian capital Tehran with Al-Nassr to face Persepolis in the group stage of the Asian Champions League in September.
It was there that the former Manchester United and Real Madrid player met Iranian painter Fatima Hamimi, who wanted to give Ronaldo a painting she had created especially for him.
Ronaldo is said to have kissed her on the cheek and given her a signed shirt, while posing for a photo in which he hugged her, angering Iranian lawyers.
Indeed, according to Iranian law, touching a married woman is tantamount to adultery.
Hamimi is said to be “85% paralyzed” and is a big fan of the Portuguese star.
Iranian network Sharq Emroz, according to Mundo Deportivo, states that the Iranian justice system reacted quickly to the photo of the two men and sentenced Ronaldo to 99 lashes during his next trip to Iran.
Al-Nassr are participating in the group stage of the Asian Champions League where they are in Group E alongside Iranian club Persepolis, Qatari club Al-Duhail and Istiklol of Takikistan.
He will not return to Iran in this phase of the competition, but if he reaches the round of 16, we cannot exclude that he will have to set foot on Iranian soil again.
These reports claimed that if he did so, Ronaldo could be arrested by Iranian authorities to force him to serve his sentence.
But the Iranian embassy has now refuted the claims and instead praised the Portuguese international’s actions.
Ronaldo is currently training with the Portugal team ahead of their upcoming matches.
Ronaldo and Rodriguez were recently photographed together in Saudi Arabia (according to Rodriguez’s Instagram)
The veteran is seen instructing his teammates during a session in an image from his Instagram
Ronaldo has been in a relationship with Rodriguez since 2016 and they have two children together, Alana Martina and Bella Esmeralda.
Rodriguez is also the mother of his three other children, eldest Cristiano Jnr and twins Eva and Mateo, born via surrogate.
Rodriguez and the children followed Ronaldo to Saudi Arabia when he joined Al-Nassr, in a deal that was confirmed on New Year’s Eve last year.
Mail Sport has contacted Ronaldo’s representatives for comment.
The veteran was in action on Friday night in Portugal’s 3-2 win over Slovakia.
He scored twice during the match to continue his fine goalscoring form this season, scoring his sixth goal in six matches for club and country.
Portugal currently sit top of Group J in the Euro 2024 qualifiers, having won all of their matches so far in their qualifying campaign.
Ronaldo had met the painter after his visit to Iran in September for Al-Nassr’s Asian Champions League match against Persepolis in the country’s capital Tehran.
They face Bosnia and Herzegovina on Monday and teammate Diogo Dalot was mocked for being on his phone during a cheeky dig on Instagram.
He has had a tumultuous month, with lawyers returning to court for a new legal battle with his Las Vegas rape accuser – and the woman seeking millions more in hush money after he paid her £275,000 in 2010 .
Kathryn Mayorga, who waived her right to anonymity after claiming Ronaldo raped her in a Las Vegas hotel room in 2009.
Ronaldo, who became the highest-paid footballer in history after signing a £177 million-a-year deal with Saudi club Al-Nassr in January, has always denied the rape allegations.
Iran ‘strongly denies’ reports claiming Cristiano Ronaldo ‘could be sentenced to 99 lashes for adultery’ after the Al-Nassr superstar was pictured hugging a painter