If MPs want to use World Cup as political football - block Morocco 2026 bid

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05 Apr 2018
Press Office

Press Office

If MP’s want to use the World Cup as a political football they should oppose Morocco’s bid to host the tournament in 2026.

A possible England boycott of the tournaments in Russia later this year and Qatar in 2022 have been mooted by politicians.

However GMB says Morocco’s bid to host the 2026 FIFA football World Cup should be rebuffed until such time as they withdraw from the occupied territory of Western Sahara and recognise the right of the Sahrawi people to self-determination and Independence.

Western Sahara is the last colony in Africa and has been illegally occupied since 1975.

Morocco has built a 2,700 mile long wall across the territory that is lined with over seven million landmines that continue to kill and maim Sahrawi citizens. 

As of December 2017, the UNHCR reported that there were 173,600 Sahrawi inhabitants living in Algerian refugee camps with no prospect of a return to their native lands.

Bert Schouwenburg, GMB International Officer, said:

 “If MPs are prepared to consider withdrawing the England team from the World Cup, then they should certainly be urging FIFA to reject Morocco’s bid to host the 2026 competition until such time as they respect their obligations under international law and withdraw from the occupied territories of Western Sahara.

“Even though FIFA has deservedly been condemned for the corrupt process leading to Qatar being awarded the 2022 tournament, despite their support for international terrorism and appalling treatment of migrant workers, surely even they would not countenance awarding the World Cup to an occupying power that has been committing human rights abuses for decades and exiled nearly 174,000 people from their rightful home.”

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