FIFA to host Israeli and Palestinian soccer heads
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FIFA to host Israeli and Palestinian soccer heads

Sides to meet as Palestinians push for vote to suspend Israel over claims it restricts movement of players

FIFA President Sepp Blatter at a press conference in Jerusalem, on Tuesday, July 9, 2013. (photo credit: Sebastian Scheiner/AP)
FIFA President Sepp Blatter at a press conference in Jerusalem, on Tuesday, July 9, 2013. (photo credit: Sebastian Scheiner/AP)

ZURICH — FIFA says it will host the leaders of the Israeli and Palestinian soccer federations within days, seeking an agreement before the governing body’s congress this month.

The Palestinian Football Association wants Israel suspended from world soccer because its security forces restrict movement of players in the West Bank and Gaza.

The PFA defied FIFA President Sepp Blatter’s wishes by pushing for a vote of 209 member countries on May 29 in Zurich.

FIFA says Blatter met Israeli soccer leaders on Wednesday and told them “any member association that is fulfilling its statutory duties should not be suspended.”

The Israeli federation has said the issues are political and beyond its control.

Blatter has worked to mediate between the two federations since a decision at the FIFA congress in 2013.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press.

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