World News

Israeli Soccer Club Infamous For Racism Adds 'Trump' To Name

Israeli Soccer Club Infamous For Racism Adds 'Trump' To Name

Jerusalem's largest soccer club announced Sunday that it has changed its name to "Beitar Trump Jerusalem", in honor of the United States president's recognition of Israel's capital and moving his country's embassy from Tel Aviv.

Sharing the news across all its official social media, the club boasted about being renamed "Beitar Trump Jerusalem".

According to a post on Beitar Jerusalem's Facebook page, Jerusalem had waited long enough- 70 years to be precise- for global recognition, and President Trump was the one to finally recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

In a statement provided to The Jerusalem Post, Beitar Jerusalem announced that they planned to change the name of the club because "we have the greatest love for the president".

"Beitar Jerusalem, one of the most prominent symbols of the city, are happy to honor the president for his love and support with a gesture of our own", it added.

More news: Roy Hodgson "really proud" of Crystal Palace players

Furthermore the name change, despite President Trump's historic decision to move the US Embassy, comes under intense scrutiny. Netanyahu tweeted Sunday, following up his May 12 Twitter post, "Thank you President Trump for keeping your promise to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and to move your embasssy [sic] here".

However, the club has a long history of anti-Arab and anti-Muslim sentiment, and is the only club in the Israeli league that has never had an Arab Muslim player.

Trump's decision to move the US Embassy has been controversial, amid fears that the move could scupper hopes for peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

The signing of the Chechen Muslims led to the harassment of Zaur Sadayev and Dzhabrail Kadiyev, racist in-game chants and even arsonists burning the club's offices in 2013.

Despite Beitar's announcement to officially change the club's name, it will require approval from the Israel Football Association, a process which is far from straightforward.


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