Highlights

  • Usman Khawaja reacts after ICC disallows his shoes bearing slogans in support of Gaza
  • ICC rules don't allow 'potentially divisive' messages during games


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Watch: Usman Khawaja criticises ICC, vows to fight for change after Gaza slogan ban

A day after it was revealed that Usman Khawaja would wear shoes with slogans in support of Gaza, the ICC has strictly prohibited him from taking the step. 

Watch: Usman Khawaja criticises ICC, vows to fight for change after Gaza slogan ban

Hours after Cricket Australia put out a statement concerning Usman Khawaja's support for Palestine, the talismanic opener has spoken up about his right to expression.

In a social media video, Khawaja questioned those who have been offended by his support to Gaza and Palestine.

'Is freedom not for everyone? Are all lives not equal? To me personally, it doesn't matter what race, religion, or culture you are. Let's be honest, if me saying 'all lives are equal' has resulted in people being offended to the point where they are calling me up and telling me off, well, isn't that the bigger problem?' Khawaja implored.

He further stated that all human life is equal for him, be it a Muslim, Jewish or a Hindu person.

'I am just speaking up for those who don't have a voice. This is close to my heart,' Khawaja reiterated.

'The ICC has told me I can't wear those shoes onfield because they believe it is a political statement under their guidelines. I don't believe this, it's a humanitarian appeal. I will respect their view and decision but I will fight it and seek to gain approval. Freedom is a human right,' Khawaja asserted at the end of his video.

Following his declaration to wear shoes with slogans expressing solidarity with Gazans, Cricket Australia wrote, 'We support the right of our players to express personal opinions. But the ICC has rules in place which prohibit the display of personal messages which we expect the players to uphold.'

Australia captain Pat Cummins also expressed his support for Khawaja while confirming that the 36-year-old won't wear the shoes on December 14 when they take on Pakistan in the first Test.

The messages ,'All Lives Are Equal' and 'Freedom is a Human Right' were spotted on Khawaja's shoes during a training session on December 12 in Perth.

ICC rules do not allow players or officials to wear any clothing or equipment without the apex body's approval while banning political and personal messages.

Also Watch: Australia's Usman Khawaja to show solidarity with Palestine in 1st Test vs Pakistan


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