BANGKOK - Fifa will hold an urgent meeting to decide if Israel should be thrown out of world football over its response to the October 7 Hamas terrorist attacks, Gianni Infantino has announced.

Infantino confirmed the governing body would carry out a “legal assessment” of a proposal submitted by the Palestine Football Association (PFA) for inclusion on the agenda for its annual congress in Bangkok this week.

The proposal, which was backed by the FAs of Algeria, Iraq, Jordan, Syria and Yemen, was not put to a vote of Fifa member associations on Friday, with Infantino revealing it would decided upon at an emergency meeting of the organisation’s council in late July.

“Football should not and should never become a hostage for politics and always remain a vector for peace, a source of hope, a force of good, uniting people rather than dividing,” he said, confirming the FAs of both Israel and Palestine would have input into the process.

“This legal assessment will have to allow for inputs and claims of both member associations. The results of this analysis and the recommendations which will follow from this analysis will subsequently be forwarded to the Fifa council.”

Speaking at the congress on Friday, PFA president Jibril Rajoub said: “How much more must the Palestine football family suffer for Fifa to act with the same severity and urgency as it did in other cases?

“Does Fifa consider some wars to be more important than others and some victims to be more significant?

“I ask you to stand on the right side of history. The suffering of millions, including thousands of footballers, deserves as much. If not now, then when? Mr president, the ball is in your court.”

Shino Moshe Zuares, the president of the Israeli FA, said: “We are facing a cynical political and hostile attempt by the Palestinian association to harm Israeli football.

“Seven months after the terrible day, when football matches cannot be played in large parts of Israel, north and south, and over 130 Israelis are still being held in Gaza, it is injustice that even in these circumstances we find ourselves fighting for our basic right to be part of the game.”

The proposal submitted last month by the PFA for inclusion on the congress agenda had accused Israel of war crimes, claiming it had breached a binding order by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to prevent a genocide in Gaza and had ignored calls from the United Nations for similar restraint.

Its proposal added: “Since the start of the Israeli war on Gaza, at least 39,178 civilians were killed in Gaza including at least 14,622 children, while 73,300 were injured. Four hundred and twenty-five people were killed in the West Bank including 113 children. By 11 March 2024, at least 92 footballers, including 23 young juniors, were killed.

“Until 11 March, Israeli attacks have damaged or destroyed 356,900 residential units, which is 80 per cent of Gaza’s homes. 435 educational facilities, including all universities and 90 per cent of the schools, and 624 places of worship were destroyed or damaged. Ten out of 35 hospitals are only partially functioning – the rest have been destroyed.”