Wiesenthal Centre to UEFA: 'Goal.com' Arabic Site Denies Legitimacy of Israel and Incites to Jew-hatred

SIMON WIESENTHAL CENTRE-EUROPE
Tel: +33(0)1 47 23 76 37
Fax: +33(0)1 47 20 84 01
Mail: csweurope@gmail.com


"Goal.com's on-line Terms of Message Contract Use forbids threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, offensive, pornographic, profane, sexually explicit or indecent [language] ... promotes violence, ... discrimination based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age... likely to harass, upset, embarrass or alarm any other person".

"Keep politics and religion out of the beautiful game".

Paris, 4 May

In a letter to the UEFA (Union of European Football Association) President, Michel Platini, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, drew attention to " the constant incitement  and offence against the State of Israel on the Arabic site of Goal.com, a web site that prides itself in having a global constituency of over 64 million fans".

The letter listed:

- "a classic example (see photo and caption, upper case for emphasis, reads in translation 'Saturday 28 March 2015, Sammy Ofer Stadium, Haifa, THE OCCUPIED TERRITORIES Wales decided to enter the 2016 UEFA Cup Finals, for the first time ever, after defeating the ZIONIST ENTITY TEAM of the City of Haifa in the OCCUPIED TERRITORIES with three straight goals). This was the first ZIONIST loss in the play-offs...'"

Samuels noted that: " 'Zionist entity' is deemed as denying the legitimacy of the State of Israel and the very right to sovereignty of the Jewish people".

See photo and Arabic caption: http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-zeggRXw1zqI/VSJSIaKhwyI/AAAAAAAAoqQ/3uzh-BXY6os/s1600/goal1.png

- "Another article celebrated how the 'OCCUPIED PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES ZIONIST TEAMS, Maccabi Tel Aviv, Hapoel Tel Aviv and Hapoel Beersheba' were unable to play in the summer of 2014 due to 'Palestinian Hamas shelling'.”

Samuels added "calling Haifa, Tel Aviv and Beersheba OCCUPIED TERRITORIES, in effect deletes all of Israel from the map".

- "Another recounts how Bosnian striker, Edin Dzeko, will not participate in the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifier against 'THE ZIONIST ENEMY' in 'THE ARAB CITY OF JERUSALEM'."

The Centre argued that "this language violates Goal.com's on-line Terms of Message and Content Use which forbids any expression that is:

- 5.7.2 is threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, offensive, pornographic, profane, sexually explicit or indecent

- 5.7.3 [that] promotes violence

- 5.7.4 [that] promotes discrimination based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age

- 5.7.10 [that] will be likely to harass, upset, embarrass or alarm any other person".

The letter pointed to "an example of how far such words can reach, occurring this Friday, 1 May, when Raja Casablanca F.C. President, Mohamed Boudrika protested violence on the pitch by the Algerian Wikaf Stef team, to epithets from their Club President, Hassan Hammar, calling the Moroccan team “Jews Jews!".

See:http://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2015/05/157477/raja-president-terrorized-algeria-algerian-police/

Samuels claimed that "multiple appeals to Goal.com London headquarters have remained unanswered," continuing,  "a similar complaint to pan-European sports network, EUROSPORT, resulted in immediate action.

The head of International Media Relations replied: 'Eurosport's editorial policy is not to express any political or religious views and this is a standard we intend to maintain'.”

"Mr. President, these words are the very hallmark of the beautiful game and we urge UEFA's support in ensuring that Goal.com take the necessary measures for its Arabic website to act in a similar manner" concluded Samuels.

For further information, please contact Shimon Samuels at +33 609 7701 58.