Ivorian International, Yaya Toure has said Mesut Ozil should have stick to football, instead of calling out China via social media for the mistreatment of the Uighur Muslim population in the country.
Ozil had spoken out against reported religious and ethnic persecution of the minority group, stating on Instagram: “East Turkistan, the bleeding wound of the Ummah, resisting against the persecutors trying to separate them from their religion.
“They burn their Qurans. They shut down their mosques. They ban their schools. They kill their holy men. The men are forced into camps and their families are forced to live with Chinese men. The women are forced to marry Chinese men.
“But Muslims are silent. They won’t make a noise. They have abandoned them. Don’t they know that giving consent for persecution is persecution itself?”
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Arsenal quickly distanced themselves from their playmaker’s comments, stating that they have “always adhered to the principle of not involving itself in politics”.
Toure, who spent eight trophy-laden years with Premier League champions Manchester City, now plies his trade in China for Qingdao Huanghai and feels that a fellow Muslim should follow Arsenal’s lead in leaving politics out of football.
“I was quite amazed,” the Ivorian told SNTV. “I think me and my point of view [is that] football is something that is very important.
“But I think footballers have to stay with football and politicians do politics because you cannot be involved in these kinds of things. It’s going to attract a lot of problems and to be honest, as a Muslim, it’s complicated.
“It’s his choice, he’s been doing his comments [on social media], but I think he was wrong to say that.”