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Two Ligue 1 Muslim Players Refuse to Wear Pro-LGBT Jersey

Toulouse’s Zakaria Aboukhlal and Nantes’ Mostafa Mohamed were omitted from the teamsheet for the Ligue 1 clash between the two clubs on Sunday for refusing to participate in a campaign against homophobia, citing religious beliefs.

“I respect all differences. I respect all beliefs and convictions. This respect extends to others but also includes respect for my personal beliefs,” Nante’s Egyptian striker wrote on Twitter in the early hours of Monday.

“Given my roots, my culture, the importance of my convictions and beliefs, it was not possible for me to participate in this campaign,” the 25-year old Muslim player said on his Twitter account in the early hours of Monday.

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The French League dedicated all fixtures over the weekend to its initiative against homophobia, with all teams in Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 this weekend having shirts featuring numbers in rainbow colours.

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French website l’Equipe reported that Mohamed refused to wear the jersey and stayed in the hotel during his team’s game against Toulouse, which ended in a scoreless draw.

“I hope that my decision will be respected, as well as my wish not to be involved in any controversy about this and that everyone is treated with respect,” he concluded.

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Moroccan Aboukhlal, a regular starter for Toulouse, also sat out the game because he refused to wear the jersey, according to La Depeche du Midi newspaper.

The paper added that Logan Costa and Fares Chaibi also did not want to play although they were both named on the teamsheet, Agence France Presse (AFP) reported.

Same-sex relationship and marriage are totally prohibited in Islam, Christianity, and all divine religions.

Islam teaches that believers should neither do the obscene acts nor in any way indulge in their propagation.

The Catholic Church teaches that homosexuality is not a sin, but considers homosexual intercourse as sinful.

Former Pope Benedict XVI had called for defending humanity against the threat posed by homosexual behaviors, warning homosexual acts could lead to the self-destruction of the human race.