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Iranian weightlifter auctions Olympic gold medal to help earthquake victims

‘I am returning the gold medal, which is theirs by right, to my people,’ Iran’s Kianoush Rostami wrote.

Kianoush Rostami with his Olympic gold medal.
Kianoush Rostami with his Olympic gold medal.
Image: SIPA USA/PA Images

AN IRANIAN WEIGHTLIFTER has put his Rio 2016 gold medal up for auction in an attempt to raise funds for those affected by a major earthquake that hit the Iran-Iraq border last week.

The 7.3-magnitude quake killed more than 400 people, and up to 10,000 were injured.

Kianoush Rostami, who also set a world record in Rio and won a bronze medal at the 2012 Games in London, posted the news on his Instagram account.

26-year-old Rostami said he was ‘taking a step, however small’ to help those in need.

He wrote (translation via CNN): “I consider it my duty to take a step, however small, to help my beloved fellow countrymen who have suffered as a result of the quake.

“I am returning the gold medal, which is theirs by right, to my people. I will auction off the medal and use the proceeds to help the quake victims.”

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