Abbas congratulates Chile’s ‘Palestino’ soccer team

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas congratulated Chilean soccer club “Palestino” for qualifying for the regional South American Cup this week.

“On behalf of all Palestinians worldwide, I want to thank you for this joy that you gave us in this special moment when we are in a diplomatic struggle to finally achieving freedom, justice and peace like other peoples in the world,” wrote Abbas in a letter that the club received on Monday.

The Palestinian community in Chile is believed to be the largest outside of the Middle East. At least 300,000 Chileans are of Palestinian descent, according to reports.

The club from Chile secured a place in the “Libertadores de America” Cup after beating Wonderes 6-1 last Sunday. The team will face Uruguayan team Nacional in its first match of the regional tournament in 2015.

“You have raised our colors and have given us a voice in difficult times. We identify Palestino as our second national team for the Palestinian people. The club Palestino is a portion of Palestine in Chile, and you are players and also ambassadors of our colors throughout South America,” added Abbas…