A broadcast by the Hamas Islamist movement urged Palestinians to boycott FC Barcelona due to the former Israeli conscript Guilad Shalit's attendance at Camp Nou to watch its forthcoming game against Real Madrid on 7th October.
Shalit's attendance for the 'Clasico' has provoked anger among many of Barcelona's supporters in the Gaza strip, a Hamas controlled territory, who have expressed their protests on social networks and urged the club not to allow him to attend.
The Hamas-linked Palestinian Prisoners' Club declared that "inviting Shalit is another attempt to cover up Zionist crimes under the pretext of sport".
"How can such a reputable club that defends multiculturalism and humanism invite a murderer and criminal like Shalit to respect and honour him?" the organisation for the support of Palestinian prisoners asked in a statement released to the media.
This would be funny, if the soccer club didn't roll over for the terrorists in about 2 seconds. Barcelona invites three Palestinians to join Gilad Shalit at match against Madrid
Barcelona invited three Palestinians to attend the Oct. 7 match against Real Madrid in response to Hamas calling for a media boycott of the club after it gave a complimentary ticket to Gilad Shalit, the former Israeli soldier who was held captive for nearly five years in the Gaza Strip.
“We understand that this is a gesture of good will by the club towards a person who has suffered five long years of captivity in the Gaza Strip and who has made known his admiration for the Barcelona team,” the petition stated. “However, the former soldier Gilad Shalit is not just an Israeli citizen; he’s also a Sergeant Major of the Israel Defense Forces, an army that since 1967 has illegally occupied the Palestinian territories of East Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza strip and the Syrian territory of the Golan Heights.”
A source in the Israeli Embassy in Spain told Israel Hayom that the opposition to Shalit’s visit was driven by a fringe group of people motivated by hatred of Israel and does not reflect the country’s general population.
“We regret that these elements are turning Shalit, who for many was and remains a symbol of an important humanitarian issue, to a target for their poisonous darts. We are certain that the team and its fans will welcome him warmly,” said the source.