To: Gianni Infantino, Ursula von der Leyen, Valentina Superti, Luisa Ragher
Boycott Saudi Arabia and Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud
We, the undersigned, raise our collective voices against the blatant attempt by Saudi Arabia, and more precisely Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, to utilize sports as a veil to obscure and distract from the glaring human rights abuses occurring within and beyond their borders, a tactic colloquially known as "sportswashing."
The extensive investments in various sports sectors, the hosting and sponsoring of global tournaments, and the acquisition of international sporting talents have been explicitly acknowledged as a method to enhance the nation’s GDP and reputation on the global stage, all while conveniently diverting attention away from internal issues.
Significant issues to consider:
The Murder of Jamal Khashoggi: A Saudi journalist who was murdered within the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, with alleged ties to Saudi leadership.
Human Rights Violations: Ongoing oppression, including the arrest and imprisonment of activists, high numbers of executions, and the suppression of free speech.
Sportswashing: Utilizing sports as a tool to deflect international scrutiny regarding the nation's human rights record, as directly acknowledged by Saudi leadership.
Global Sports Organizations and Athletes: To resist the lure of lucrative deals and to take a stand against participating in events that serve as propaganda tools for oppressive regimes.
International Governments and Institutions: To enhance scrutiny, demands, and pressures regarding the human rights practices within Saudi Arabia, irrespective of economic and political ties.
Media and News Organizations: To maintain persistent and unyielding coverage of the human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia, not allowing the glare of sporting events to overshadow the plight of those suffering under oppressive conditions.
Global Citizens: To raise awareness about sportswashing and to actively boycott events and teams associated with such practices.
In Solidarity: With the activists, journalists, and innocent individuals who have been persecuted, imprisoned, or executed for merely raising their voices against the regime.
Against Sportswashing: Recognizing that sports should not be used as a veil to obscure, justify, or sanitize the reputations of oppressive regimes.
For Human Rights: Asserting that the rights of individuals to speak, act, and live freely should supersede any sporting event, and that we must not allow our global love for sports to blind us to the atrocities occurring before our very eyes.
By signing this petition, we pledge our commitment to resist the allure of sportswashing, to persistently stand for human rights, and to ceaselessly speak out until substantive changes are enacted within Saudi Arabia.
Why is this important?
Upholding Moral and Ethical Standards:
Engaging in or supporting entities that blatantly use sports to overshadow systemic human rights violations is an indirect endorsement of those malpractices.
It's essential to uphold ethical standards, ensuring that international engagements, collaborations, and platforms are not used to legitimize or sanitize the reputations of oppressive regimes.
Solidarity with the Oppressed:
By taking a stance, we express our solidarity with activists, journalists, and citizens who are oppressed, marginalized, or persecuted.
Our collective voice may serve as a beacon of hope and support for those suffering under unjust conditions, showing them that the international community has not turned a blind eye to their plight.
Preserving the Integrity of Sports:
Sports have traditionally been a source of joy, unity, and shared humanity. It’s vital to protect this global institution from being manipulated as a tool for political gain or a cover for reprehensible actions.
Athletes, fans, and organizations should prioritize the ethical integrity of sports, ensuring that they are not utilized as vehicles to propel propaganda or shield misconduct.
Asserting the Primacy of Human Rights:
The safeguarding of human rights should always supersede any economic, political, or entertainment interests.
Demonstrating that gross violations of human rights will not be overlooked or forgotten, even amidst glittering sporting events or investments, sends a strong message to all nations and entities regarding international priorities and values.
Building a Just and Accountable Global Community:
It is our collective responsibility to ensure that the global community does not prioritize financial gains, strategic alliances, or entertaining diversions over the fundamental rights and wellbeing of individuals.
Building a world where nations and leaders are held accountable for their actions, and where the wellbeing of citizens is prioritized, is pivotal for crafting a future that is just, equitable, and humane.
Why Join This Campaign:
Empowering Collective Action: Your signature, voice, and engagement can empower collective efforts, making the campaign more influential and capable of instigating change.
Promoting Universal Values: Joining the campaign aligns you with universal values of justice, humanity, and ethical governance, contributing toward the establishment of a global standard that respects and honors human dignity.
Creating a Ripple Effect: Your involvement could inspire others to participate, creating a ripple effect that amplifies the call for justice, human rights, and transparency on a global scale.
Preserving Human Dignity: By actively resisting sportswashing, you contribute to the efforts to preserve the dignity of oppressed individuals, ensuring that their suffering is not masked by international spectacles.
Shaping Future Narratives: Your participation aids in shaping the narratives of future international engagements, encouraging entities worldwide to prioritize ethical, humane, and just practices.
Let us unify our voices, acting as stewards for justice, human rights, and ethical global engagement, ensuring that sports remain a pure, unadulterated celebration of human potential, devoid of manipulative political undertones.