Iran is not messing around, even over a footballing legend. One of Ronaldo's latest Instagrams, in which he poses with Iranian painter Fatima Hamimi, clashes with Iranian law. The penalty could see the player whipped 99 times should he return to the Islamic Republic.
Here is the infamous picture, as posted by the artist herself.
Did Ronaldo commit adultery according to Iranian law?
Ronaldo visited Hamimi to pick up two paintings— a seemingly innocuous moment captured on social media. A video shows Ronaldo embracing the painter and kissing her on the cheek.
The scene struck a nerve in Iranian lawyers, according to Mundo Deportivo, who claim that CR7 committed adultery.
Iranian law states that Ronaldo's contact with a married woman contradicts the nation's interpretation of Islamic law, categorizing the actions as adultery. Ronaldo is unmarried but has a seven-year relationship with Argentine Georgina Rodríguez.
What happens when Ronaldo returns to Iran?
The punishment for adultery in Iran is 99 lashes. However, Ronaldo can avoid the lashing if he formally apologizes to Iranian officials.
The good news for CR7 is that Ronaldo's club no longer needs to visit Iran; caution: in this round. However, should Al-Nassr and an Iranian team advance in the Asian Champions League, the player and parties could meet again. Al-Nassr will likely leave Ronaldo at home and risk facing the consequences.
This is the second time Ronaldo has faced a brush-up with laws in the Middle East. He faced criticism and potential legal threats from Saudi Arabian officials upon moving to the Middle Eastern country with his girlfriend and five kids. According to Saudi law, unmarried couples can't live together in the same house. Unmarried foreigners can, however, live together in a hotel, which is how Ronaldo and co skirted the issue.