The FIFA Monitoring Committee Israel-Palestine, comprising representatives from the Israel Football Association (IFA) and the Palestinian Football Association (PFA) led by their respective presidents Ofer Eini and Jibril Rajoub, held its first meeting today at the Home of FIFA in Zurich, under the chairmanship of Tokyo Sexwale and in the presence of FIFA President Blatter.
The FIFA Monitoring Committee was set up following the intense mediation work by FIFA President Blatter and the subsequent approval by the 65th FIFA Congress.
During the meeting, the FIFA Monitoring Committee discussed details related to its mandate and clarified its composition, which will include the chairman Tokyo Sexwale, the IFA General Secretary Rotem Kamer, the IFA Legal Counsel Efraïm Barak, the PFA Director of the International Department Susan Shalabi Molano, the PFA Legal Counsel Gonzalo Boye and two representatives of the FIFA Congress from CONCACAF, CONMEBOL or the OFC to be designated shortly.
“I’m humbled as this is not an easy task, but this meeting represents an important first step towards the consolidation of a regular exchange between the football associations of Israel and Palestine. I’m feeling confident after seeing the team spirit today, as both associations have confirmed their intention to promote dialogue. As we have witnessed in my home country South Africa, I’m convinced that here too we’ll bring people together through the power of sport,” said chairman Sexwale.
“This is a new era, there is a different feeling in the room with the two associations talking to each other. There was a clear consensus at the Congress that a solution should be found. FIFA will continue its tireless efforts to bring both member associations together to reach a solution for the benefit of football in the region,” commented FIFA President Blatter.
“I’m very happy to start the process towards finding solutions,” said Jibril Rajoub.
“I believe that we will be able to develop a dynamic of cooperation. Both Mr Rajoub and I want fair conditions for our footballers,” said Ofer Eini.
Now that the composition has been established, the Committee will next meet in the Middle East region in September.