Hamas welcomes cancellation of Argentina-Israel soccer game

Hamas praises Argentina’s national soccer team for cancelling friendly match with Israel, calls for Israel's "true image" to be exposed.

Elad Benari ,

Abed Rahim Katib/Flash 90

The Hamas terrorist organization on Wednesday praised Argentina’s national soccer team for cancelling a friendly match with the Israeli team that had been scheduled for this coming Saturday.

"The cancellation of the game with the Argentina national team is something to be commended and cherished,” said senior Hamas official Husam Badran, according to Channel 10 News.

“The true image of the enemy must be exposed in all its truths in every arena," Badran wrote in a statement.

The Israeli embassy in Argentina officially announced on Tuesday night that the friendly match had been cancelled, citing threats against Argentine star Lionel Messi as the reason for the cancellation.

"The threats and provocations against Lionel Messi, which logically raised fears against holding the game, are not foreign to the daily lives of the Israeli population, whose athletes have often been the target of violence and terror attacks," the embassy said in a series of tweets.

Earlier reports in Argentina indicated the match was cancelled earlier following Palestinian Arab pressure on the Argentine team not to play in Jerusalem.

Jibril Rajoub, head of the Palestinian Football Association, welcomed the cancellation of the friendly game.

"The Palestinian FA thanks Argentina's players led by star Messi for refusing to be used to serve a non-sporting goal. Values, morals and sport have secured a victory today and a red card was raised at Israel through the cancellation of the game,” he said.

Rajoub had earlier called on Messi not to play in the Argentina-Israel game in Jerusalem, urging fans to burn their shirts if he does. He has in the past tried to have FIFA, the governing body of soccer, ban Israeli teams based in Judea and Samaria.

Regev on Wednesday evening addressed the cancellation of the friendly match, saying, “This is a decision stemming from threats to the life of the national team star Messi. The terror threats to his life were decisive for him.”

“This is the same terrorism that led to the murder of the fallen in Munich. Then they were murderers from Black September, today it is Jibril Rajoub who continues with the terror," she continued.