Glasgow & West Scotland

Celtic fans raise £85,000 'for Palestine' after Uefa charge

Fans display Palestine flags at Celtic's Champions League play-off first leg against Hapoel Beer Sheva Image copyright SNS
Image caption Palestine flags were on display at the Champions League play-off first leg

Celtic fans have raised more than £85,000 for Palestinian charities after the club was charged by Uefa over a flag display during last week's game with Israeli side Hapoel Beer Sheva.

Palestinian flags were waved around Celtic Park during the Champions League match on Wednesday night.

Uefa later charged the club over an "illicit banner" display.

Celtic fans have now launched a "#matchthefineforpalestine" campaign to raise funds for two charities.

In a Go Fund me page, Celtic fans state: "At the Champions League match with Hapoel Beer Sheva on 17 August 2016, the Green Brigade and fans throughout Celtic Park flew the flag for Palestine.

'Act of solidarity'

"This act of solidarity has earned Celtic respect and acclaim throughout the world. It has also attracted a disciplinary charge from Uefa, which deems the Palestinian flag to be an 'illicit banner'.

"In response to this petty and politically partisan act by European football's governing body we are determined to make a positive contribution to the game and today launch a campaign to #matchthefineforpalestine.

"We aim to raise £75,000 which will be split equally between Medical Aid Palestine and the Lajee Centre, a Palestinian cultural centre in Aida Refugee Camp on the outskirts of Bethlehem."

Celtic have been punished by Uefa eight times in five seasons for fan misconduct.

The club's case will be heard on 22 September.

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