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Israeli soccer club renames itself after US President Trump

News 14 May 2018, 19:33 IST
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Jerusalem, May 14 (PTI) One of Israel's most famous soccer clubs has renamed itself Beitar 'Trump' Jerusalem in honour of US President Donald Trump's "courageous" decision to relocate the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

In an announcement, ahead of the official opening of the new US embassy, Beitar Jerusalem said it wanted to pay tribute to Trump's "courageous move," CNN reported.

In a statement published on Facebook on Sunday, the club said, "For 70 years has Jerusalem been awaiting international recognition until President Donald Trump, in a courageous move, recognised Jerusalem as the eternal capital of Israel. President Trump has shown courage and true love of the Israeli people and their capital.

"The football club Beitar Jerusalem, one of the most prominent symbols of the city, are happy to honour the President for his love and support with a gesture of our own," the club said.

Beitar, a six-time Israeli league champion, is no stranger to controversy, the report said.

The club's hardcore fans, known as "La Familia," routinely chant anti-Arab and anti-Muslim slogans during matches, for which the team has previously been penalised, it said.

Beitar, which has never signed an Arab player, had its offices torched by supporters after signing two Muslim players from Russian League club Terek Grozny, based in Chechnya, in 2013.

Since announcing his decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Trump has become the namesake for a number of subjects in Israel, including parks, streets, and a planned high-speed rail station near the Western Wall in the Old City, the report said

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