The Red Card Israeli Apartheid campaign is launching a new phase of its activities aimed at persuading UEFA, football’s European governing body, not to grant Israel the privilege of hosting the Under-21 competition in 2013.
Following publication in the Guardian newspaper of the letter below, signed by several prominent Europeans, we are now working with activists across the continent to have the letter more widely published and to build pressure on the football authorities to respond to the Palestinian appeal.
So far not one word of acknowledgement has been received from UEFA for the letter they received back in June from representative Gazan sporting organisations.
Please tweet, Facebook, post and blog in order to pile the pressure on UEFA chief Michel Platini to get this decision reversed.
Israel’s stance in the community of nations
Those who lead European football must respond to an appeal from Palestinians dismayed at the prospect of Israel hosting Uefa’s under-21 tournament in 2013. A state that uses military might to hold sway over land it illegally occupies and exploits, flouts international law and ignores UN resolutions surely forfeits the right to be treated as a member of the community of nations. But western powers continue to embrace Israel as an ally.
During the 2011 under-21 tournament in Denmark in June, 42 Gazan football clubs, backed by many sporting bodies, wrote to Uefa president Michel Platini calling on his organisation not “to reward Israel for its violent repression of Palestinian rights”.
We ask Uefa to respond positively to this plea.
Stephane Hessel diplomat
Ken Loach filmmaker
Michael Mansfield barrister
Miriam Margolyes actor
Nurit Peled Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought joint winner 2001
John Pilger journalist and filmmaker,
Ahdaf Soueif novelist and political and cultural commentator
Jean Ziegler vice-president, advisory committee of the UN human rights council
© 2011 Guardian News and Media Limited