Friendly soccer match leads to Fatah threats

Fatah activists in W. Bank threaten Palestinian teenagers who participated in a friendly soccer match with Israeli youth.

By
May 15, 2013 20:54
1 minute read.
joint Arab-Jewish soccer game

Netanyahu at joint Arab-Jewish soccer game 370. (photo credit: Moshe Milner GPO)

 
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Fatah activists in the West Bank have threatened Palestinian teenagers who recently participated in a friendly soccer match with Israeli youth.

The tournament was organized by Mifalot, which describes itself as the largest and most diverse sports group for development and peace organization in the Middle East.

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Mifalot was founded in 1997 by the owners of Hapoel Tel Aviv Football Club and the Kahanoff Foundation. It’s mission is to “capture the power of football in order to build more active, compassionate and cohesive communities and promote peaceful coexistence.”

The most recent controversial football match, which was held in Holon as part of a project called United Neighbors, brought Palestinian and Israeli teenagers together with the support of the European Union.

But as soon as photos of the Palestinian and Israeli players appeared on a number of websites, Fatah activists denounced the event as a form of “normalization” with Israel.

Several Fatah activists posted threatening messages on the Internet against the Palestinian boys and girls who participated in the tournament.

A statement issued by the Fatah leadership in Ramallah also condemned the event, dubbing it a “strange trend.”

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The statement threatened to reveal the identities of the Palestinians who were responsible for organizing the football match with Israelis.

Fatah accused the organizers of “ignoring the fact that Israel has not accepted the principle of coexistence and is continuing to violate all international laws and the will of the international community for achieving peace in the Middle East.

Over the past few years, Fatah has been spearheading a campaign against informal meetings between Israelis and Palestinians.

Fatah activists have foiled a number of events planned by Israeli and Palestinian nongovernmental organizations under the pretext that such meetings are aimed at “normalizing” relations between the two sides.

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