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Blatter to meet Palestinian FA chief over Israel ban call

The Palestine FA said last week it would submit its proposal at the May 28-29 FIFA Congress in Switzerland

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FIFA president Sepp Blatter is set for a series of meetings in the Middle East ahead of a Palestinian bid to suspend Israel from world soccer's governing body, Palestine FA chief Jibril Rajoub said on Sunday.

Accusing Israel of hampering its soccer activities, the Palestine FA said last week it would submit its proposal at the May 28-29 FIFA Congress in Switzerland.

“I am going to meet Blatter in Cairo on Tuesday to discuss the draft resolution that we have requested -- that either Israel honour its commitments or it will be suspended from membership of FIFA,” Rajoub said. “The meeting is at Blatter's request.”

Next month, ahead of the congress, Blatter will meet Arab soccer chiefs in Bahrain to discuss the bid and will also visit the Palestinian territories, Rajoub said.

A spokeswoman for the Israeli FA declined to comment on whether Blatter would also meet Israeli soccer chiefs during his trip. In past visits, the FIFA president has met with both neighbours.

Despite efforts by Blatter to ease tensions, the Palestinians remain frustrated at restrictions they say Israel imposes on the movement of their athletes between the Gaza Strip and the Israeli-occupied West Bank.