The Wiesenthal Center Commends FIFA for Choosing Argentina to Host the Under-20 Soccer World Cup

March 31, 2023

Buenos Aires – Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim nation had been chosen as the venue for the upcoming Under-20 Soccer(Football) World Cup.

Unfortunately, politics stained sports when authorities suddenly weighed in to oppose participation of the Israel team, which had passed the qualifying stage.

This led to the suspension of the draw for the schedule and subsequent intervention of FIFA, which finally sanctioned Indonesia by canceling the venue and prevented its participation in the near future.

The Argentine Football Association immediately offered to organize the World Cup event.

FIFA today awarded the honor to the federation of the last champion of the recent World Cup in Qatar.

Dr. Ariel Gelblung, Wiesenthal Center`s Director for Latin America stated: “We commend FIFA on choosing the Argentine Football Association. The AFA was the first national federation in the world to adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) Definition of Antisemitism. It is also where for the first time, any referee is authorized to suspend a match when racist or xenophobic chants are heard from the stands. This practice was later globalized. And the Argentine Professional Football League, a competition between the highest-ranking clubs, grants together with our institution the Simon Wiesenthal award every year to the team, player, or coaching staff that best embodies the values that Sports must convey."

For further information, please contact Dr. Ariel Gelblung at +54 9 11 49695365.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center is an international Jewish human rights organization numbering over 400.000 members. It holds consultative status at the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the Council of Europe, the OAS and the Latin American Parliament (PARLATINO)

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