A Minnesota teen is again told she can't box because of her hijab

Amaiya Zafar has been told this before, but says she's training for when her time finally comes.
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Amaiya Zafar is 16 years old and wants to box.

She's from Oakdale, Minnesota, and was supposed to actually box, in the ring, Sunday in Kissimmee, Florida. But while putting on her boxing gloves just before the match, she was told it was a no-go.

Her hijab meant she couldn't box, the Council on American-Islamic Relations says.

Zafar is Muslim, and her religion is important to her. So she wants to wear her head scarf and dress appropriately while in the ring.

She has her own website where she goes over her story. She writes in part:

"In the 2+ years I've pursued boxing, I have faced a lot of adversity. While most support me in this journey, some have opinions that they are eager to share, telling me I should take up baking or sewing rather than taking on a 'men's sport' ... I work to keep myself at my very best and to keep God first. When the time comes, I will be ready to fight my hardest!"

Zafar's backstory

Zafar's story has been in the news before.

The rules are set by the International Boxing Association, and USA Boxing follows them. They say you can't wear anything in the ring besides the gloves, trunks and uniform.

Last year, she was hoping to compete in a Duluth event at the time while wearing her hijab, as well as Under Armour to cover up her arms and legs.

Zafar and CAIR got USA Boxing to ask the International Boxing Association to make an exception so Zafar could fight.

CAIR said Monday if the association has made a change, nobody's been told. And based on what happened Sunday, that doesn't seem to be the case.

Her opponent though, to show support for Zafar, shared the belt from her "win" by disqualification. (See the photo above.)

“All athletes should be able to compete in their sport of choice without facing roadblocks based on outmoded and discriminatory policies,” said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper in the group's release.

Fusion recently did this video feature with Zafar, if you want more.

Young Boxer Fights to Wear Hijab"When they say I can fight, I'll be ready."

This boxer isn't allowed to compete while wearing her hijab – but the fight's not over.

Posted by Fusion on Sunday, September 4, 2016

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