Darya Safai (born in 1975 in Tehran, Iran) grew up in the Islamic Republic of Iran after the revolution of 1979. There she experienced first hand how it was to live as an oppressed woman in a religious dictatorship. She graduated as a dentist at the University of Tehran. In 1999 she actively participated together with her husband in the bloodily suppressed student protests against the religious regime’s dictatorship.
As a result she was imprisoned. After being temporarily released on bail, she decided to flee with her husband via Turkey to Belgium.
After her arrival in Belgium she learnt Dutch at the Leuven Language Institute of the Catholic University of Leuven (2001).
In 2003 she graduated again as a dentist at the Free University of Brussels and started dental practices together with her husband in Brussels and Antwerp.
However she has never forgotten about the situation of Iranian women and in 2014 she founded the group ‘Let Iranian Women Enter Their Stadiums’ to strive for the right of Iranian women to attend sports games in stadiums. She uses the stadium ban as a symbol of one of the many acts of discrimination Iranian women are confronted with on a daily basis. Recently her book ‘Lopen tegen de wind’ (which means ‘Running against the wind’) was published.
Darya is married and has two children.