Egypt-Palestine match called off after Jerusalem clashes

The National Sports Council (NSC) has called off a friendly match between Egypt’s Olympic team and the Palestinian national team, previously scheduled for 28 March.

The cancellation comes as a response to recent clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces in Jerusalem.

The decision to hold the match faced fierce opposition from politicians and sports professionals, as the Egyptian football delegation will have to get Israeli visas which, critics say, is a form of normalization with Israel.

Samir Zaher, president of the Egyptian Football Association (EFA), said that Hassan Saqr, head of the NSC, told him that he received "instructions from above" to postpone the match until otherwise declared.

Zaher said he welcomes any step to help the Palestinians as long as it is approved by state officials. As part of the state, Zaher said, the EFA, can’t take a step without first gaining the approval of the government.

Translated from the Arabic Edition.

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