Hapoel Abu Ghosh-Mevasseret Zion embodies the idea of friendship and tolerance, which can inspire clubs all over the world – even European football is not always immune to racism.

 Abu Ghosh-Mevasseret Zion football club in Prague

 

Copyright: Embassy of Israel, Prague

From the Embassy of Israel, Prague:

At the end of October, the junior football club of Abu Ghosh-Mevasseret Zion came to Prague to train and play two friendly matches. Though Jews and Arabs play together in many Israeli football clubs, Hapoel Abu Ghosh-Mevasseret Zion is still the only Jewish-Arab football team of its kind in the country, and probably in the world.

The football club of the Mevaseret Zion and Abu-Ghosh towns on the western outskirts of Jerusalem was founded in the summer of 2004 on the initiative of former Israeli Ambassador Alon Liel.

What makes it so special? Hapoel Abu Ghosh-Mevasseret Zion is the only club, headed jointly by Jews and Arabs whose mission, aside from promoting the sport of soccer in the area, is to use the united club as a tool to fight racism, to enhance social justice, and to promote Arab-Jewish co-existence.

This is a project that serves as a shining example of the fact that football (and sports in general) can help bridge cultural, linguistic, ethnic and religious barriers.