Fatah, the movement led by President Mahmoud Abbas, has today issued a statement criticising Argentina’s upcoming football match against Israel and urging the Argentine Football Association (AFA) to cancel the game.
The friendly, which is due to take place on 9th June, shortly before the start of the World Cup, has provoked plenty of controversy since it was first announced. Fatah’s appeal to the Argentinean government and AFA stems from the misleading, peaceful image of Israel that the game will present to the international community.
Mohammed Khalil, a young Palestinian football player, has made a personal appeal to Argentina, through the #NothingFriendly campaign, ‘to stand in solidarity with Palestine and to boycott the scheduled game with Israel, which is occupying our land’. Khalil, 19, was shot in both legs on 30th March whilst peacefully protesting in Gaza, ending his football career.