Bunions Aires: Argentina have cancelled their football friendly with Israel after protests by pro-Palestinian groups and claims of threats against star player Lionel Messi.
Jibril Rajoub, head of the Palestinian football association, had encouraged fans to burn shirts bearing Messi’s name if he decided to play.
The Israeli embassy said “it regrets to communicate the suspension of the match between Israel and Argentina”, and referred to unspecified “threats” and “provocations” against Messi.
Mr Rajoub told journalists that he had written to Argentina’s government asking that the player not take part.
“The Israeli government is trying to give it political significance by insisting it be held in Jerusalem,” he said, adding that Messi was “a symbol of peace and love”.