(JTA) — A soccer match between Argentina and Uruguay scheduled for later this month in Israel is being targeted by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement.
Over the weekend, protesters demonstrated at a training camp in Barcelona and called on star players Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez not to play in the match scheduled for Nov. 18 in Tel Aviv. Messi, from Argentina, and Suarez, from Uruguay, are both international soccer stars who play together for Barcelona in Spain’s La Liga professional soccer league.
Last year, a BDS campaign led to the cancellation of a match between Argentina and Israel in Jerusalem.
The official Twitter account of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, or PACBI, posted photos of the demonstrators in Barcelona, tweeting: “Reports confirm the players got the message loud and clear at Barcelona training ground.
“Israel uses the prestige of championship teams like Argentina and Uruguay and star players Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez to sports-wash its regime of oppression, apartheid and occupation. We’ve stopped this before. We can stop it again” the BDS movement said in a statement.
Messi previously visited Israel in 2013 with members of FC Barcelona. He has won the FIFA Ballon D’Or prize for the best soccer player in the world five times and is considered one of the greatest players of all time.