Iran Asian cup
Iranian footballers are banned from taking pictures with female women at Asian Cup matches Getty Images

Iran's footballers have been banned from taking pictures with female fans who attend the Asian Cup matches, held in Australia.

The Iranian Football Federation, which issued the ban, said footballers could face punishment if they are seen taking pictures with women, and that they also risk being used "as political tools", AFP reported.

Ali Akbar Mohamedzade, head of the moral committee of the Iranian Football Federation, initiated the ban after pictures of footballers with women started circulating in January.

"National team players should be aware that they won't be used as a political tool so that those who take pictures with them don't use these photos against the players," Mohamedzade said to local media.

"So according to this they should not take photos with everyone. If the players don't respect this, we will be obliged to take action.

"We are monitoring what is happening in Australia, we haven't sent any representative to Australia," he continued.

Iranian women are not allowed to attend men's sporting events in the Islamic Republic.

Last summer, Iran banned female fans and journalists from attending World League volleyball matches in the capital Tehran.

National police chief general Esmail Ahmadi Moghaddam said it was "not yet in the public interest" for men and women to attend such events together.

Iranian women were also banned from watching the 2014 World Cup.

Last September, a British woman was jailed after attending a men's volleyball match in Tehran.