Luton Town FC, an English Football League Championship team, has decided to drop Puma as their first-team kit supplier, switching to the UMBRO brand for the upcoming 2020/21 season, Palestine News Network PNN reported on Wednesday.
The news was hailed as another victory for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement (BDS), which has launched a global campaign under the hashtag #BoycottPuma.
Puma is the sponsor of the Israeli football association, which includes teams that are based in the illegal Jewish-only settlements throughout the occupied Palestinian territories.
.@Puma supports illegal settlements that Israel plans to formally & illegally annex.
Settlements force Palestinian families from their homes & are war crimes under international law.#BoycottPuma until it ends support for Israel's crimes. #StopAnnexation https://t.co/Nt5Jqwt2ou pic.twitter.com/dhPVIEQe92
— PACBI (@PACBI) July 14, 2020
The Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) along with other rights organizations and activists, called on Luton Town FC to drop the Puma sponsorship.
“Over 5000 e-mails had been sent to Luton’s management calling on them to end the kit deal, and the local Luton PSC branch has engaged with the club directly asking them to end their relationship with Puma,” PNN reported.
As soon as the club released its new first-team kit without the Puma logo, social media went abuzz with congratulatory remarks to the team for making that decision.
— PSC (@PSCupdates) July 27, 2020
“Thank you @LutonTown for taking a stand against racism, and giving @PUMA the boot,” tweeted the Luton PSC group.
“#PumaFam endorse racial-segregation by sponsoring #ApartheidIsrael,” the group added.
“We welcome the new deal with @umbro. #BoycottPuma. #FreePalestine.”
— Luton PSC (@lutonpsc) July 24, 2020
In a statement, spokesman for the Luton PSC, Markus Keaney thanked “Luton Town FC for their constructive responses to our calls to boycott Puma, and for notifying us directly of their decision to drop the company as their kit supplier.”
“We hope other clubs will follow suit and choose to stand with justice, freedom, and equality,” Keaney added.
(The Palestine Chronicle)