Israel files FIFA complaint after Argentina match cancelled

Israel files FIFA complaint after Argentina match cancelled
Pro-Palestinian activists pressured Argentina into cancelling a friendly match with Israel in light of the Gaza massacre.
2 min read
06 June, 2018
The Arab League also urged Argentina to cancel the match [Getty]
Israel's football association announced on Wednesday that it plans to file a complaint to FIFA accusing its Palestinian counterpart of pressuring Argentinian players and staff into cancelling a friendly match.

Rotem Kamer, vice-president of the Israeli Football Association, accused the Palestinian FA of "football terror" after its leader called for protests against Argentina.

Argentina was set to play against Israel in a friendly match on Saturday, however in an interview with sports network ESPN striker Gonzalo Higuain confirmed that the match had been scrapped.

Demonstrations against the game have been held in recent days in Buenos Aires and Barcelona outside the Argentine national team's training camp.

The head of the Palestinian football federation called on sports fans to burn photos and T-shirts of Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi if he attended the friendly match.

Jibril Rajoub made the call after a demonstration in front of the Argentine representative office in Ramallah, where he asked Argentina to cancel the match.

The Arab League also urged Argentina to cancel the match, which was set to take place on the site of a Palestinian village in Jerusalem destroyed in the 1948 war.

The controversy over the match comes after Israeli troops killed at least 126 Palestinians and more than 10,000 have been injured since mass demonstrations began on March 30.

The demonstrations and violence peaked on May 14 when at least 61 Palestinians were killed as tens of thousands of Gazans protested the US transfer of its embassy in Israel to the disputed city of Jerusalem the same day.

The protests - dubbed "Great Return March" - have centred on the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes, after they were expelled following the 1948 creation of Israel.