Israel, a non-European country, is bidding to host the 2020 European Football Championships. It has just finished killing 2100 Gazans and now it wishes to host teams from around Europe in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and beyond. A trailer for the documentary, ‘Goal Dreams’ highlighting the plight of the Palestinian National Football Team under occupation can be viewed here.
Please copy this template email, (amend if you wish) and send it to info@UEFA.com
FAO: Michel Platini and UEFA
On the 19th September, you will be choosing which of the 13 nations will host the Euro 2020 football competition. We appeal to you to exclude Israel/ Jerusalem from this list of hosts.
Israel flouts the UN position that Jerusalem should be an open city for all, making it impossible for most Palestinians to visit the holy sites there, or to visit relatives. The Israeli state supports the confiscation of Palestinian land and homes in East Jerusalem for the use of illegal settlers. They have recently approved the construction of 1500 Israeli-only settlement homes in Palestinian East Jerusalem. These settlements are illegal under international law.
Amnesty International published a report entitled Trigger Happy which documents the treatment of Palestinians by the Israeli occupation forces. The report describes this treatment as “unnecessary, arbitrary and brutal”. Just one example of this was seen earlier this year when Israeli soldiers shot repeatedly at the legs and feet of two talented teenage Palestinian footballers at a checkpoint, maiming them for life.
Israel has just conducted a war in which it killed 2100 Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip, including 4 boys playing football on the beach and 15 people who sought refuge in a UN School in Beit Hanoun. Israel continues to perpetrate its devastating military occupation of the Palestinian territories, flouts international law, totally disregards UN resolutions, and imprisons hundreds of Palestinians, including children, without charge.
UEFA is a core strategic partner of Football Against Racism in Europe. It would be a mockery if UEFA were to allow Israel, a state that systematically denies basic rights to people based on their race, annexes their land, imprisons their population, steals their water, impedes their free movement, a state compared to South Africa during Apartheid by Bishop Desmond Tutu, to host the UEFA championships.
Leaders of international football must respond to the pleas from suffering Palestinians to sanction Israel in the community of nations. I hope you will be on the right side on history in not choosing Israel to host this fantastic competition.
[Your Name Here]
For more information about the national ‘Red Card Israel’ campaign, click here
To read the letter from Palestine appealing to UEFA, click here