Open Letter

More than 200 Palestinian Sports Clubs Urge Puma to End Sponsorship of Israeli Teams in Illegal Settlements

September 20, 2018
/ By /

Palestinian football clubs and sports associations urge Puma to end its sponsorship of the Israel Football Association due to inclusion of teams based in illegal Israeli settlements on stolen Palestinian land.

To: Bjørn Gulden, CEO of Puma

Cc: Management and Supervisory Board members: Michael Lämmermann, Lars Sørensen, Jean-François Palus, Jean-Marc Duplaix, Béatrice Lazat, Thore Ohlsson, Bernd Illig and Martin Köppel  

10 September 2018

We are writing to urge Puma to end its sponsorship of the Israel Football Association (IFA) due to its deep complicity in Israel’s violations of international law and Palestinian human rights.

The IFA sponsors football matches in illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank, as exposed by Human Rights Watch and other human rights organizations. There are six Israeli football clubs located in Israel’s settlements, on stolen Palestinian land, that Palestinians are not allowed to enter. Israel’s settlements contribute to serious human rights abuses and are a direct cause for restrictions on Palestinian freedom of movement, access to natural resources and ability to build homes and conduct business.

IFA’s involvement in Israel’s illegal settlements has been condemned by, among others, Wilfried Lemke, the UN special adviser on sport for development and peace, dozens of Members of the European Parliament (MEP), civil society and human rights groups and public figures from the world of arts and culture. Despite these global appeals, the IFA has decided to put politics above sports and refused to end its complicity.

As the main international sponsor of the IFA, Puma is lending its brand to cover up and whitewash Israel’s human rights abuses, including against Palestinian footballers. Palestinian players are routinely attacked, imprisoned and killed. They are denied the freedom of movement to attend their own matches. Palestinian stadiums have been bombed and destroyed. Israel even prevents Palestinians from importing football equipment and developing football facilities.

Puma’s sponsorship of the IFA legitimises and gives international cover to Israel’s illegal settlements. UN Security Council Resolution 2334 (2016) denounces Israeli settlements as “flagrant violations” of international law. The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) is compiling a database of companies that do business in or with Israel’s illegal settlements as a practical step for accountability of complicit corporations. Puma’s sponsorship of the IFA would land it on this list based on the selection criteria. In addition, your sponsorship of the IFA, an entity with operations in the settlements, makes Puma complicit and may expose it to consumer-led boycott campaigns in the Arab world and globally.

According to your Code of Ethics, Puma is committed “to human rights and intend[s] to act as a socially responsible company” wherever it operates.

We urge you to abide by your Code of Ethics by withdrawing your sponsorship of the Israel Football Association (IFA) until it ends its involvement in Israel’s grave violations of international law and human rights abuses against Palestinians.

Signed:

  1. Al-Jalama Youth Club
  2. Bruqeen Sport Club
  3. Al-Sila Al-Haretheya Sport Club
  4. Askar Youth center
  5. Al-Arqa Youth Sport Club
  6. Deir -Istiya Sport Club
  7. Al-Teba Sport Club
  8. Til sport club
  9. Arraba sport club
  10. Yasoof Sport Club
  11. Ta’ank sport club
  12. Al- Tadhamon Sport Club
  13. Burqeen sport club
  14. Kifl Hares Sport Club
  15. Jaba’ Sport club
  16. Bazarya sport club
  17. Jalboun sport club
  18. Masha Sport Club
  19. Marj Bin Amer Sport Club
  20. Duma Sport Club
  21. Rumana Sport Club
  22. Ebal Sport Club
  23. Zaboba Sport Club
  24. Asira ash-Shamaliya Club for Women
  25. Silat Ad-Dahr Sport Club
  26. Balata Youth  Center
  27. Tura Al-Gharbiya Sport Club
  28. Employees Club- Nablus
  29. Anin sport club
  30. Ahli-Balata Sport Club
  31. Al-Yamoun Youth Sport Club
  32. Oref Sport Club
  33. Anza Sport Club
  34. Asira ash-Shamaliya Sport Club
  35. Yabad Youth Club
  36. Aqraba Sport Club
  37. Faquoaa Sport Club
  38. Asira Al-Qibliya Sport Club
  39. Al-Jadida Sport Club
  40. Qusen Sport Club
  41. Qabatya Sport Club
  42. Sarra Youth Club
  43. Hilal Arana Sport Club
  44. Palestinian Woman Club
  45. Kufr-Than Sport Club
  46. Beit Furik Sport Club
  47. Fahma Sport Club
  48. Burqa Sport Club
  49. Kufr- Ra’i Sport Club
  50. Qusra Club Association
  51. Al-Fondoqawmiya Sport Club
  52. Burin Sport Club
  53. Maithalon Sport Club
  54. Beita Sport Club
  55. Barta’a Sport Club
  56. Jabal Al-Nar Sport Club
  57. Jenin-Camp Youth Center
  58. Al Madina Club-  Nablus
  59. Ajja Sport Club
  60. Central Valley Sport Club
  61. Brothers Sport Club
  62. Nablus Youth Club
  63. Palestinian Young Women Club
  64. Al-Qustol Youth Club
  65. Tayasir Sport Club
  66. Qaryout Club
  67. Deir Abu Da’if Sport Club
  68. Beit Dajan Sport Club
  69. Al-Ahli Qalqilya Club
  70. Al-Sawya Club
  71. Jenin Sport Club
  72. Al-Lubban ash-Sharqiya Club
  73. Islami Qalqilya Club
  74. Youth center No.1
  75. Tubas Club
  76. Yasid Sport Club
  77. Azzun Sport Club
  78. Deir-Sharaf Sport Club
  79. ‘Aqqaba Sport Club
  80. Osarin Sport Club
  81. Jayyous Sport Club
  82. Hittin Sport Club
  83. Tammun Sport  Club
  84. We are All Palestine Youth  Club
  85. Jeinsafout Youth Club
  86. Sport Association Club
  87. Al-Fara’a Youth Center
  88. Sur Baher Jerusalemite Club
  89. Kufr-Thilth Sport Club
  90. Jurish Sport Club
  91. Al-Raja’ for Development and Sport Association
  92. Beit Surik Sport  Club
  93. Kufr Zibad Association Club
  94. Samaritan Community Club
  95. Deir Jarir Sport Club
  96. Silwan Sport Club
  97. Immatain Youth Sport Club
  98. Madama Sport Club
  99. Ahli- Al RAM Club
  100. Kufr-Aqab Sport Club
  101. Habla Sport Club
  102. Umm Tuba Sport Club
  103. Kharbatha Bani Hareth Club
  104. Zeita Sport Club
  105. Kufr-Jammal Sport Club
  106. Jamma’in Sport Club
  107. Qalandya Camp Youth Center
  108. Kufr Al-Labad Club
  109. Nabi Ilyas Youth Club
  110. Beit Iba Youth Sport Club
  111. Al-‘Oja  Youth Club
  112. Anata Youth club
  113. Kufr-Qaddum Sport Club
  114. Talfit Sport Club
  115. Beit Sira Sport Club
  116. Al-Ram Youth Club
  117. Hija Sport Club
  118. Al-Ta’awon Club for Persons with Disabilities
  119. Kharbatha Al-Misbah Club
  120. Islami Ramallah Club
  121. Qarawat Bani Hassan Club
  122. Biddu Sport Club
  123. Sama Sport Club
  124. Beit Almaqdes association for Arab Horses
  125. Biddya Sport Club
  126. Huwara Sport Club
  127. Sharafat Sport Club
  128. Arab Club -Beit safafa
  129. Al-Zawya Sport Club
  130. Majdal Bani Fadil Club
  131. Al-Eizariya Youth Club
  132. Shu’fat Sport Club
  133. Deir-Ballut Club
  134. Al-Musatqbal Club for People with Physical Disabilities
  135. Aboud Sport Club
  136. Alansar Jerusalemite Club
  137. Sarta Sport Club
  138. Salim Sport Club
  139. Jericho youth Club
  140. Islamic Youth  Association Club-Al-Ram
  141. Salfit Sport Club
  142. Al-Awda Club for Persons with Disabilities
  143. Zbedat Sport Club
  144. Bethlahem Orthodox Club
  145. Kufr Ad-Dik Club
  146. Tulkarm Youth Center
  147. Kufr –Ein Sport Club
  148. Irtah Youth Sport Club
  149. Hebron Youth Club
  150. Alar Culture and Sport Club
  151. Al-Ersal Sport Club
  152. Al-Ramadin Youth
  153. As- samu Youth Club
  154. Deir Al- Ghusun Club
  155. Arab Orthodox Cultural Club- Beit Sahour
  156. Al -Fawar Youth Center
  157. Bani Na’im Youth Club
  158. Anabta Sport Club
  159. Al- Sawahra Sport Club
  160. Dura Youth Club
  161. Al Shuyukh Youth Club
  162. Tulkarm Cultural Sport Club
  163. Ein Al Sultan Youth Center
  164. Islami Bethlehem Club
  165. Yatta Youth Sport Club
  166. Qaffin Sport Club
  167. Jaba’ Youth Sport Club
  168. Nazlat 'Isa Social Cultural Sport Club
  169. Beit Awwa Youth Club
  170. An- Nazla Ash- Sharqiya Club
  171. An- Nuway’imah Sport Club
  172. Susya  Sport Club
  173. Al-Arroub Youth Center
  174. Thinnaba Sport Club
  175. Bil’in Sport Club
  176. The Capital of Birth Sport Club
  177. Taffouh Sport Club
  178. Shwayka Club
  179. Bir Nabala Sport Club
  180. Al-Siryani Club
  181. Beit Kahil Sport Club
  182. Nur Shams Center
  183. Al-Quds Sport Club
  184. De La Salle Sport Club
  185. Al-Karmel Yatta
  186. Ramin Sport Club
  187. Dura Al-Qari’ Sport Club
  188. Bethlehem Sports Club for the Disabled
  189. Surif Youth Club
  190. Far’un Sport Club
  191. Islami Sur Baher Club
  192. Salah Al-Din Sport Club
  193. Halhul Sport Club
  194. Bal’a Sport Club
  195. Fasayil Youth Club
  196. Al-Burj Youth Club
  197. Sa’ir Youth Club
  198. Beit Lid Sport Club
  199. Social Youth Center – Shuafat Camp
  200. Tarqumiyah Youth Club
  201. Beit Ummar Youth Sport Club
  202. An-Nazla al-Gharbiya Club
  203. Shuqba Sport Club
  204. Husan Sport Club
  205. Rabud Sport Club
  206. Attil Sport Club
  207. Ni’lin Sport Club
  208. The Palestinian Academy for Sport Talent
  209. Wadi al-Nis Sport Club
  210. Seda Youth Sport Club
  211. Old City Youth Association
  212. Baqa ash-Sharqiyya Club
  213. Al-khader Sport Club
  214. Iktaba Sport Club
  215. Saffa Sport Club
September 20, 2018
/ By /

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