By Chris Wright
You may recall that not so very long ago we told you about the Chilean side who found themselves accused of, among other things, “fomenting terrorism” for replacing all the No.1’s on the back of their jerseys with little maps of Palestine?
The club in question, Deportivo Palestino (who also play in the colours of the Palestine flag), were formed in Chile by Palestinian immigrants back in 1920 and decided to feature the silhouette of Palestine as it was before much of the politically-charged territory became Israeli land.
The gesture was seen as needlessly confrontational and discriminatory by many, including a couple of other teams in the Chilean league. Indeed, it was the owner of first division club Nublense, Patrick Kiblisky, who was the first to submit a formal complaint against Palestino.
The President of the Chilean Jewish community, Gerardo Gorodischer, also openly demanded an apology from the club and requested that the Chilean FA ban them from using the shirts.
Well, yesterday Gorodischer got his wish, with the Chilean football federation (FFC) declaring that Deportivo Palestino are now banned from playing in their ‘Palestine’ kit – instructing the club that they are to compete this season while wearing last year’s design.
The FFC also fined Palestino $1,300 (approximately £800), before announcing that they had decided to punish the club as their organisation is opposed to “any form of political, religious, sexual, ethnic, social or racial discrimination”.