MOEEN Ali must stop wearing his ‘Save Gaza’ and ‘Free Palestine’ wristbands while playing for England, the International Cricket Council has decided.
England were prepared to let their all-rounder continue wearing the wristbands, declaring his support for the population of Gaza, during the remainder of the third Investec Test against India.
But the ICC has ruled that its international sports arena is not after all the place for British Muslim Moeen’s show of solidarity.
He has not been charged or punished, but simply told the wristbands must go when he is out on the field.
A spokesman for the world governing body said: “The ICC equipment and clothing regulations do not permit the display of messages that relate to political, religious or racial activities or causes during an international match.
“Moeen Ali was told by the match referee that, while he is free to express his views on such causes away from the cricket field, he is not permitted to wear the wristbands on the field of play and warned not to wear the bands again during an international match.”
The England and Wales Cricket Board was unaware beforehand of Moeen’s plans to wear the wristbands but was not planning unilaterally to ask him to take them off until the ICC made it clear he must.
The 27-year-old made 12 runs in England’s 569 for seven declared on day two at the Ageas Bowl, and an ECB spokesman said on Monday night: “We don’t believe he has committed any offence.”
Israel launched an air offensive against Hamas militant forces in Gaza at the start of this month, and more than 1,000 people are reported to have been killed since then in the ongoing conflict in the Middle East.