Spanish hotel worker arrested for 'racist, Islamophobic' posts on Morocco football team
Spanish police arrested a man on Monday in connection with a series of racist and Islamophobic social media posts he allegedly made about the Morocco national football team when they stayed at a hotel in Madrid.
The detained man, who worked at the Eurostars Madrid Tower hotel, purportedly posted images to his Instagram account bemoaning about having to serve the Moroccan players a meal during Ramadan, online sports news site AS reported.
"We losers are serving for Ramadan s*** and their f****** s***** beliefs," read the text on one of the photos he allegedly posted.
The Atlas Lions are in Madrid for an upcoming friendly with Peru. Eurostars Madrid Tower Hotel said they "strongly condemned" the social media posts, AS reported.
The hotel also said the man was not an in-house staff member, but an "extra" brought in for hotel events.
The New Arab has contacted Madrid municipal police for more information on the arrest.
An Arab Muslim manager at the hotel said they had been personally hurt by the posts.
"In a personal capacity, I am an Arab person, a Muslim, who is celebrating Ramadan like many colleagues in the hotel and for this reason we feel just as hurt as any Muslim in the world," the manager reportedly said.
But that did not stop Moroccans and others hurt by this story from making angry comments on posts from a Eurostars' social media page, which now appears inactive.
The Moroccan football team has been the target of racist and Islamophobic abuse on multiple occasions.
While on their historic run at the 2022 World Cup - where they became the first Arab or African team to reach the tournament’s semi-finals - a Danish television host likened the relationship between players and their families to that of monkeys.
Moroccan coach Walid Regragui said of the latest incident: "We are Muslims and in our religion, we learn to forgive. We are going to forgive him, let him learn about this topic."