By Chris Wright
A Chilean team originally founded by Palestinian immigrants back in 1920 have been accused of “fomenting terrorist intent” after choosing to swap all the number ’1′ digits on the back of their strip with silhouettes of the former Palestinian map before the disputed territory became Israeli land.
Now, at this point it’s probably worth mentioning that Pies freely admit to knowing or understanding next to nothing about the Palestine/Israeli conflict – so forgive any political bias we may haphazardly appear to be displaying here – believe us, it’s entirely unintentional.
Anyway, Deportivo Palestino have been called out by Chile’s Jewish contingent over their choice of numbering, with the JTA reporting that the president of the Chilean Jewish community, Gerardo Gorodischer, is demanding an apology from the club and has also asked the Chilean FA to ban the shirts, while the Simon Wiesenthal Center (a global Jewish human rights organisation) have also contacted the Chilean FA in an open letter to demand that Deportivo Palestino are punished for what they call “fomenting terrorist intent”.
“We know that FIFA prohibits such actions,” Gorodischer told reporters. “You cannot make a political claim and import the Middle East conflict using the platform of football, using the sport to lie and hate.”
The Palestinian Federation of Chile have already responded to the Jewish outcry, releasing a statement which read: “We reject the hypocrisy of those who blame this map but they talk about the occupied territory as disputed territory.”
By ‘eck, we’re going to stay way, way, waaaaaaay out of this one.