Lawfare Project calls on FIFA to penalize Palestinian Football Association

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The Lawfare Project (LP) joined colleagues in submitting an official complaint to the Disciplinary Committee of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), urging it to address the ongoing and severe violations of FIFA Statutes being committed by the Palestinian Football Association (PFA) and its president, Jibril Rajoub.

The submission was prepared in collaboration with Palestinian Media Watch (PMW), UK Lawyers for Israel, and the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies. We thank our partner organizations for their dedication to this matter.

Breaches of FIFA’s regulations by the PFA and Rajoub include promotion of racism and terrorism, incitement of hatred and violence, and encouragement of kidnap and murder.

“For too long, the PFA has used the sport to promote terrorism in a most egregious manner, unabashedly celebrating acts of terror and naming teams after mass murderers,” said LP Director Brooke Goldstein. “By punishing Muslims who play with Jews, the PFA is actively and intentionally preventing normalization between Israelis and Arabs. As usual, innocent Muslim children are among the primary victims of the Palestinians’ conduct. FIFA can no longer remain silent — inaction will only send the message that FIFA condones such overt abuse of its institution.”

Jonathan Turner, Chair of UK Lawyers for Israel, said: “We have put forward a legal analysis and practical proposals which support the game as a means for bridging gaps between peoples and avoid dragging it into the political dispute. We hope our submission will help FIFA reach a correct decision in the interest of the game instead of setting a damaging precedent which could be invoked in numerous other territorial disputes around the world.”

According to Itamar Marcus, Director of PMW: “There is no place for terror and hatred in football and, as long as the PFA and Rajoub continue these activities, it is a stain on FIFA and all international sports. PMW is certain that, until now, FIFA has been unaware of this or they would have already taken action.”

If you would like to help us “Kick Terrorism Out of Football”, please send a personal email, along with our complaint, to FIFA President Gianni Infantino at President@fifa.org and to FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura at SecretaryGeneralOffice@fifa.org.