Israel seeks to indict Palestinian official who targeted Messi

Israel has taken steps to open a criminal investigation against soccer chief Jibril Rajoub for threatening Messi.

By: World Israel News Staff

Israel is fighting back against the Palestinian official who led to Argentina’s cancellation of a friendly soccer game with Israel and is seeking to have him sanctioned on several levels.

Israeli Minister of Public Security and Strategic Affairs Gilad Erdan contacted Israel’s security and legal authorities, including the Attorney General, the Judge Advocate General and the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), and petitioned them to open a criminal investigation against Palestinian Football Association (PFA) chief Jibril Rajoub, Arutz 7 reported.

Rajoub had personally targeted Argentinean star Lionel Messi and called on him to boycott Israel.

Rajoub implored Messi not to “play a role in whitewashing the occupation,” adding that if Messi does play in Israel, Arab and Muslim sports fans should burn photos and t-shirts of the Barcelona superstar.

The Argentinean team was scared away from Israel by an influx of protests against the match and by threats received by family members of the players.

Addressing the Global Coalition for Israel (GC4I) conference in Jerusalem on Tuesday, attended by some 100 heads of pro-Israel organizations fighting boycotts on Israel, Erdan explained that the request followed complaints filed against Rajoub for incitement to murder and support for terrorist attacks with Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA).

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Erdan also asked COGAT to deny Rajoub entry permits to Jerusalem and the Temple Mount because of his involvement in incitement and activity against Israel.

“Rajoub incites to murder Jews and supports terrorism, and it’s time he pay for it,” Erdan stated at the GC4I.

“We mustn’t allow his cover and his role to deceive us,” the minister continued. “This is a man who threatens athletes and expresses support for murder attacks and terror. He is part of the boycott movement against Israel and we must act against him. Rajoub’s place is in prison, not in international institutions and sporting events.”

The Palestinians have utilized FIFA several times in recent years as a platform for attacking Israel.

Rajoub, who served time in an Israeli prison for acts terrorism, is the driving force behind the Palestinian battle against Israel in the world of sports.

“Any activity of normalization in sports with the Zionist enemy is a crime against humanity,” Rajoub stated in 2014.

In 2012, slamming the idea of organized sports activities with Israelis, Rajoub stated on PA TV that he would bring Arabs by helicopter to events instead of crossing through Israel “so they will see no Jews, no Satans, no Zionist sons of bitches.”