Top Tory piles huge pressure on FA over refusal to light up Wembley

A top Tory MP has said she is “extremely disappointed” by the Football Association’s (FA) decision not to light up Wembley Arch following Hamas’ attack on Israel on Saturday.

The organisation refuses to show the colours of the Israel flag on the arch for fear of receiving backlash from nearby communities.

Lucy Frazer, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said: “I am extremely disappointed by the FA’s decision not to light up the Wembley Stadium arch following last weekend’s horrific terrorist attacks in Israel, and have made my views clear to the FA.

“It is especially disappointing in light of the FA’s bold stance on other terrorist attacks in the recent past. Words and actions matter. The Government is clear: we stand with Israel.”


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It comes hours after Nigel Farage called the organisation “cowards” and “hypocrites”.

Instead of lighting the arch in solidarity with the victims of the Hamas terror attack, the FA says it will share a message of peace and unity when England hosts Australia in a friendly match at the stadium on Friday.

Farage earlier said in a video shared on X, formerly Twitter: “This is pure cowardice … If we’re so scared of these extremists who celebrate terror on the streets of London, we’re in a bad place.

“I’m sorry to the FA. You can take the knee all you like but this makes you total, utter hypocrites.”

During Friday’s game, players will also wear black armbands and there will be a one-minute silence before kick-off, the FA wrote in a statement.

The organisation also banned people from bringing Israel and Palestine flags to the upcoming match as well as the match against Italy on October 17.

It wrote in a statement: “Following discussions with partners and external stakeholders, we will only permit flags, replica kits and other representations of nationality for the competing nations inside Wembley Stadium for the upcoming matches against Australia and Italy.”

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