W. Bank official: 'Peace team' won't be punished

Bader Makei, director-general of the Palestinian Football Association in the West Bank, insisted Thursday that the participation of Palestinian players in the "Peace Team" which played along Israelis last week in Barcelona had full Palestinian Authority backing, and denied the players had been investigated about playing in the game. He said the Gaza soccer federation had no authority to make any decisions pertaining to these players. Official PA sources said that Jamal Zaqout, a senior Palestinian Football Association official in Gaza, had no official position in the PA and "has no authority to issue statements in the name of the Palestinian Authority." Ron Pundak, director-general of the Peres Center for Peace, said the Barcelona match was held with the blessing of both Mahmoud Abbas and Jibril Rajoub.