Protesters gather outside Premier League HQ to call for an end to Saudi involvement in football 1 month ago

Protesters gather outside Premier League HQ to call for an end to Saudi involvement in football

"Save soccer from Saudi regime"

Protesters have gathered outside the Premier League's headquarters in London to campaign against Saudi involvement in football.

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The protest has taken place just weeks after the Premier League confirmed that Newcastle United had been sold, with a Saudi-backed consortium replacing Mike Ashley as the club's owners.

Many people were opposed to the prospect of Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF) becoming the Magpies' new owners - with a number of human rights issues linked to Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman.

The English top flight approved the deal after being given assurances that the PIF was separate to the Saudi state - despite the fact it is chaired by Bin Salman.

Prior to the deal being confirmed, the fiancee of murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi urged the Premier League not to 'cave in' on the Saudi takeover at Newcastle.

Hatice Cengiz - Khashoggi's fiancee - told Telegraph Sport that she was shocked that the league were willing to let Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman "wash his reputation, and sully the name of sports".

Ms Cengiz and her legal team are currently pursuing a lawsuit against Crown Prince Bin Salman, with the CIA believing that the Saudi Arabian politician "approved" the kidnap, drugging, torture and assassination of Mr Khashoggi in 2018.

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Now, a group of protesters have situated themselves outside of the Premier League's headquarters in London to campaign against the murder of Khashoggi, and Saudi involvement in football in general.

The person leading the protest shouted, "Saudi regime", to which the protestors replied: "Save soccer from Saudi regime."

He then shouted, "Justice for Jamal [Khashoggi]", to which the protestors replied: "Justice for Jamal".

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It is not the first time that people have campaigned for justice for Khashoggi, with a poster calling for justice for him seen outside St. James' Park ahead of Newcastle's first game since the completion of the Saudi-backed takeover last weekend.

Amnesty International and others have since criticised the Premier League for allowing the deal to be concluded in light of the Middle East State's human rights record, claiming it is an attempt to sportswash the country's reputation - damaged by the allegations about Khashoggi's murder.

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