The Argentina and Uruguay national football teams are planning a âfriendlyâ match in apartheid Israel on November 18, ignoring Palestinian appeals and as Israel carries out attacks on besieged Gaza.
For Israel, this is about using the beautiful game to sports-wash its crimes of occupation and apartheid against Palestinians, including athletes.
For the Football Associations, this is clearly about the money. Argentina even canceled an already scheduled friendly match with Paraguay to make the match in the ethnically-cleansed Palestinian city of Jaffa happen.
We need to reach the players. They have the power and the influence to stop this match.
Tell Argentina and Uruguay players:
Apartheid is never âfriendly.â Cancel the match now!
Players need to know they should be standing with Palestinian amputee footballers in Gaza who lost limbs to Israeli army sniper fire, instead of entertaining apartheid Israel.
Players need to know they should be standing with the families of Palestinian children killed by Israel while playing football, instead of sports-washing Israelâs military occupation and ethnic cleansing.
Players need to know they should be standing with Palestinian athletes deprived by Israel of freedom of movement and the chance to compete, instead of covering up Israelâs siege, illegal settlements and apartheid walls.
Tell Lionel Messi and Luis SuĂĄrez:
Donât allow your teams to be complicit in sports-washing Israelâs attacks on Palestinian sports —
Last week, human rights supporters inÂ BarcelonaÂ went to the grounds where players Lionel Messi and Luis SuĂĄrez were training to make a personal appeal to them.
Letâs speak to the players themselves. Let them know that football fans across Palestine and the world want to see sports used to empower and promote tolerance, not to cover up gross human rights abuses.
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Christopher Carlson is a full-time student of Religious Studies at Mount Mercy University, USA. He has been with the IMEMC since 2013. (email@example.com)