Judo competitor Wojdan Shaherkani has been told she can wear her headscarf
Her father and Saudi officials insist she must wear it
This year is the first time Saudi Arabia has sent women to the Olympics
Shaherkani is 16 and competes in her first match Friday
A female Saudi Arabian judo fighter will be allowed to compete while wearing a hijab, a Saudi Olympic Committee spokesman said Monday.
Razan Baker told CNN that International Olympic Committee, International Judo Federation and Saudi officials had agreed that Wojdan Shaherkani could wear a headscarf during her matches.
Shaherkani had signed an agreement with Saudi Olympics officials that she could compete only if she wears “correct and approved” clothing that “sticks to Islamic principles,” Baker said.
This year is the first time every nation competing in the Olympics is sending women as well as men. Saudi Arabia was the last country to announce that it would send female athletes.
Her father, Ali, was adamant that he would not let his daughter compete if she must remove her hijab, he told the Saudi newspaper Al Watan on Monday.
Shaherkani, 16, is scheduled to compete Friday. Her photo on the Saudi team’s Olympics website shows her with a scarf that covers her hair but not her face.
Middle distance runner Sarah Attar is the only other woman on the 19-member Saudi team.
CNN Senior International Correspondent Nic Robertson and CNN’s Schams Elwazer contributed to this report.