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Return VIP status to Palestinian sports chief FIFA asks Israel

Published: Updated:
FIFA is asking Israel to return VIP status to Palestinian football union President Jibril Rajoub, allowing him to enter Israel without security checks.

The Zurich-based global football governing body said Wednesday that it asked the Israeli football association to help secure Rajoub’s “freedom of movement.”

An Israeli defense official said Rajoub’s status was lowered last month along with another Palestinian official, Nabil Shaath, because they had “incited violence against Israel.”

He was speaking on the condition of anonymity according to protocol. He said they can travel freely in and out of Israel but now need to show credentials and can be subjected to security checks.

The status change came after the U.N. endorsed a Palestinian state in the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza.