“We are aware that the Palestinian demand to expel the Israeli Football Association may be raised at the FIFA Council and Congress, respectively on 9 and 11 May… We call, on the contrary, for the Palestinian Football Association to be expelled until all names of terrorists are removed from Palestinian teams, tournaments and stadiums.”
Paris, 4 May 2017
The Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, wrote to FIFA (International Federation of Football Assiciation) President Gianni Infantino and to the Head of FIFA's Disciplinary Department, Jaime Cambreleng, to protest Palestinian continued attempts to politicize football, by demanding FIFA’s expulsion of the Israeli Football Association (IFA).
“On the contrary, the Palestinian Football Association (PFA) should be expelled for its violation of FIFA regulations,” argued Samuels.
The letter noted that: “For many years our Centre has worked with UEFA and sister NGOs against racism and violence in European football and, more recently, in Latin America through the PARLATINO Latin American Parliament,”
“We have had, however, for the past three years to advise FIFA of the constant incitement and endorsement of terrorism by Jibril Rajoub, Palestinian Minister for Sports and Chair of the PFA… Indeed, together with a small group of Christian friends of Israel, I was physically assaulted by his supporters outside FIFA headquarters in Zurich at the 65th Congress in July 2015,” lamented Samuels.
In August 2016, the Centre provided FIFA and the United Nations Sports for Peace programme with a list of assassins, iconized in all Palestinian sports activities. Attached is the full list of the 21 Palestinian bodies that glorify terror (based on reports by Palestinian Media Watch <www.palwatch.org>)
The letter stated: “We are aware that the PFA is once again politicizing football by demanding the expulsion of the Israeli Football Association from FIFA at your forthcoming Council meeting on 9 May and Congress on 11 May. This is nothing but a stratagem to cover up the PFA's violations of FIFA membership as a patron of terror.”
The letter continued: “By linking their ‘sports heroes’ with antisemitic terrorists, the Palestinian Authority, through the PFA, deliberately foments hate among its youth thereby extinguishing the hope for peace… Indeed, Rajoub has defined sport encounters of young Palestinians with their Israeli peers as a 'crime against humanity'.”
“The Wiesenthal Centre is thus proud to join the Palestinian Media Watch complaint: ‘Kick Terror Out of Football!’ (see attachment) and adds a call to FIFA to expel the Palestinian Football Association until the Palestinian Authority removes all names of terrorists from all sectors of Palestinian sport and their acts of terror be publicly condemned by Ramallah,” concluded Samuels.