Israel condemns football giant for Tamimi meeting

Palestinian activist Ahed Tamimi, who was imprisoned for eight months after slapping an Israeli soldier, on Saturday was honoured by the Real Madrid football team in Spain.

The 17-year old Ahed Tamimi and her father Bassem were honoured at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium, the home of Real Madrid, where they were greeted by former striker Emilio Butragueno.

Here the former Spanish international presented Tamini with Real Madrid’s white jersey with ‘Ahed’ printed across the back, and the number 9.

Within football number nine is commonly assigned to strikers who take the front lines of the field and score most of the goals.

Following Ahed Tamimi receiving her new football shirt, the Israeli government on Sunday condemned both the city of Madrid and the football giant Real Madrid for honouring the Palestinians activist teenager.

Israel’s ambassador to Spain, Daniel Kutner, wrote on Twitter: Ahed Tamimi does not fight for peace, she defends violence and terror, the institutions that have received and celebrated her indirectly encourage aggression and not the dialogue and understanding that we need.

The visit was also condemned by Emmanuel Nahshon, a spokesman for the Israeli Foreign Minister.

What a shame, Real Madrid accepts a terrorist that incites to hatred and violence, what is the connection between this and soccer values?, he wrote on Twitter.

Real Madrid has not issued any official statement regarding the invitation of Tamimi on its social networks or website.

The Palestinian teenager is visiting Spain with her family to help spread the word about the conditions in their hometown, Nabi Saleh.

The visit to Spain has been warmly welcomed by official media, and the activist spent a busy week meeting with various officials to discuss her experience in resisting Israeli occupation.

Tamimi took on the Israeli forces after they shot her cousin in the head with a rubber bullet.

She was later arrested in December 2017 after a video of her slapping and hitting two soldiers, from the Israel Defence Forces, outside of her house in the village of Nabi Saleh in the West Bank went viral.

Following the arrest, she has become a figure of Palestinian resistance after spending eight months in prison. She was released in late July.

Spain has a long history of support for the state of Palestine.

Last month Spain announced they were ready to recognise a Palestinian State and urged their fellow members of the European Union to do the same.

Source: Palestine Monitor