Fatah Central Committee Secretary and Chairman of the Palestinian Football Association Jibril Rajoub: "We gave a letter to the ambassador of Argentina... intended for the government of Argentina and the Argentine [Football] Association, but it is also intended for [Argentine football player Lionel] Messi – Messi, who is a symbol of love and peace, and who is a UNICEF ambassador for spreading love and tolerance. We demand that he not serve as a means to beautify the fascist occupation's image and its racist policy… We won’t in any way agree that this game [between Argentina and Israel] take place. Starting from today we will begin a campaign against the Argentinian [Football] Association, and we will personally target Messi, who has tens of millions of fans in Arab states, Islamic states, in Asia, in Africa, and in states that are friends of the Palestinian people. He is a symbol and a great thing for them. We will target Messi, and will demand that everyone burn their [Messi] shirts and pictures and renounce him – but we still hope that on Thursday, Messi will not come and will not be exploited to whitewash the occupation's crimes… I do not think that there is a difference between what is happening today and what happened in Europe in the 1930s."
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