Press Release - Mahmoud Sarsak


In the name of sporting solidarity, justice and human rights, we declare our support for Palestinian footballer Mahmoud Sarsak. As European sportsmen, we believe that every person has the right to a fair and independent trial.
On 22 July 2009, Mahmoud Sarsak, 25 years old, left his home in Rafah in the Gaza strip to join his national team in the West Bank. He never arrived. Mahmoud was arrested at the checkpoint of Erez, interrogated and detained without any charges. Three years later, he is still in an Israeli prison, without any charge or trial. Like hundreds of Palestinian prisoners, Mahmoud is in “administrative detention”, which allows the Israeli authorities to keep people in prison without giving any reason or the need for a trial, and for as long as the Israeli authorities want.

Mahmoud’s family is not allowed to visit him. For these reasons, Mahmoud Sarsak began a hunger strike. Today is the 88th day that he has refused food, and lost more than 30kg in body weight. His health is deteriorating and his life is in danger.

A person’s freedom cannot be taken in an arbitrary way. In the name of civil liberties, justice, and basic human rights, we call for the release of Mahmoud Sarsak.
Nicolas Anelka, football player
Demba Ba, football player
Abdoulaye Balde, football player

Jonathan Bru, football player

Gailord Bwasi, football player

Diomansy Camara, football player

Philippe Christianval, football player

Omar Daf, football player

Issiar Dia, football player

Abou Diaby, football player

Soulaymane Diawara, football player

Mike Digbeu, basketball player

Pape Diop, football player

Ladji Doucouré, athlete

Doudou Jacques Faty, football player

Ricardo Faty, football player

Rémi Gomis, football player

Frédéric Kanouté, football player

Jo Le Guen, sailor

Mamadou Niang, football player

Fabrice Numéric, football player

Momo Sissoko, football player

Moussa Sow, football player