Has the FIFA corruption crisis saved Israel from vote to expel it from world football?


One consequence of the US order to the Swiss police, on 27 May 2015, that it arrest and extradite seven FIFA officials for alleged corruption, could be that a vote to kick Israel out of world football for its racism towards Palestinians will now not take place. The vote was due to be held by the FIFA annual congress on 29 May and expected to win majority support among the delegates. Below Geoff Lee from Palestine Solidarity Campaign explains why the vote should go ahead.

THERE IS a unique situation in the Middle East: in that one country, Israel, is deliberately hindering another – Palestine – from playing football, and exhibits racism and discrimination against Palestinians within its own jurisdiction.

Due to this, Palestinians are demanding action which is perhaps slightly belated, but nonetheless, as urgent as ever. On 20 March 2015, the Palestinian Football Federation (PFA) submitted a motion for debate at the upcoming 28-29 May FIFA annual congress in Zurich. The motion calls for the suspension of the Israeli Football Federation (IFA) from FIFA until the following conditions are satisfied:

  1. Football participants and all equipment related to the sport are able to move freely in, out and within Palestine.
  2. Football facilities are to be built and maintained in Palestine without hindrance.
  3. Football clubs established within illegal settlements in the West Bank are to be banned from playing in IFA competitions
  4.  IFA is to take firm action in order to eliminate racist and apartheid practices within its own leagues.
  5. IFA is to recognise the PFA as the sole governing body for football within Palestine.

These conditions address longstanding grievances. PFA has supported initiatives by FIFA for nearly two years, but regrettably – though not unexpectedly, these came to naught.  For this reason, it argues, strong pressure in the form of suspension of IFA is needed to bring about essential change.
Read more at Stop The War Coalition

Published in: on May 29, 2015 at 06:43  Leave a Comment  
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