Editor’s Note: The following is a statement from the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel. Mondoweiss occasionally publishes press releases and statements from organizations in an effort to draw attention to overlooked issues.
Last year, letters from Palestine, a huge outpouring on social media and actions on the ground in Buenos Aires and Barcelona convinced Argentina to cancel a planned friendly match in Jerusalem.
Israel uses the prestige of championship teams like Argentina and Uruguay and star players Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez to sports-wash its regime of oppression, apartheid and occupation.
We’ve stopped this before. We can stop it again.
Tell Argentina and Uruguay: There’s Nothing Friendly About Israeli Apartheid
The Khadamat Rafah Football Club in Gaza wrote to both teams urging them “not to allow the beautiful game to be used as cover for gross human rights violations.”
Khadamat Rafah overcame huge obstacles caused by Israel’s brutal 12-year siege and repeated military aggressions to win the 2019 Gaza League championship. However, Israel’s severe restrictions, which shamefully deny Palestinians their right to freedom of movement, prevented the team from playing in the Palestine Cup. This is cruelty by design.
Tell Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez: Palestinian Footballers need your support
Groups in Argentina and Uruguay are mobilizing on the ground to convince the teams to stand with Palestinian footballers in their struggle for the right to live and play.
Join them on social media!
Let Argentina and Uruguay know on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram that that fans around the world won’t stand for them teaming up with Israel’s regime of oppression.