Palestinians criticize Infantino’s visit to Israel which saw the FIFA chief attend an event at the museum built in Jerusalem’s historic Muslim cemetery.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino has suggested that Israel co-host the 2030 World Cup with other regional states, the office of Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said after a meeting on Tuesday.
Infantino became the first head of world football’s governing body to visit Israel this week.
“During their discussion, the FIFA chief raised the idea that Israel would host the #WorldCup in 2030, along with other countries in the region, including the United Arab Emirates,” the spokesperson said. by Bennett on Twitter.
Welcome to Israel, FIFA President Gianni Infantino! ⚽️
It was a pleasure to meet you and hear your idea on Israel hosting the @Fifa World Cup in 2030, with our Arab neighbors.
This is a goal we can all work towards! ?? pic.twitter.com/CXi9TIgcFn
– Prime Minister of Israel (@IsraeliPM) 12 October 2021
The Palestinian Football Association (PFA) said it had apologized for not hosting Infantino due to the FIFA chief’s participation in an Israeli event which “did not serve his stated messages regarding the values of the international football system “.
In the presence of former US officials who were part of the Trump administration, Infantino joined in the opening of the “Friedman Center for Peace by Force” at the Israel Museum of Tolerance, which the PFA denounced Tuesday as “Participating in a political conference that has nothing to do with sport”.
The museum is built on the historic Muslim cemetery in Jerusalem, which the PFA has denounced as “a flagrant violation of international law, human rights and the feelings of millions of Muslims around the world.”
The politicization of sport will not serve the cause of peace, the PFA said in its statement.
Israel has a history of bombing Palestinian sports stadiums, preventing soccer players in the Gaza Strip from training and playing with Palestinians in the occupied West Bank, and targeting and arresting soccer players.
“We had hoped that this visit would be a prelude to ending the suffering of Palestinian players and occupation measures aimed at hampering the dissemination and development of the game in the Palestinian territories, and not to support Anglican-Zionist groups who profess their call to violate international law and deny the fundamental rights of the Palestinian people, ”the PFA statement added.
Biennial World Cup
The World Cup tournament scheduled for 2030 is also desired by South America, which could bid with Uruguay, Argentina, Paraguay and Chile, while a combined bid from the UK has also been mentioned.
Portugal and Spain, as well as China, have also expressed interest.
The host is to be decided in 2024.
After the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, the first 48 Nations World Cup will be held in 2026 in the United States, Canada and Mexico.
FIFA is considering the possibility of hosting the World Cup every two years from 2028, but this has faced opposition from various football bodies, including the European confederation UEFA.