Luis Rubiales' mother locks herself in church to protest 'bloodthirsty hunt' against her son

Luis Rubiales' mother locks herself in church to protest 'bloodthirsty hunt' against her son
Spain’s deputy prime minister condemns Rubiales’ behaviour after World Cup final

The mother of Spain’s football chief, Luis Rubiales, locked herself in a church on Monday and declared herself on hunger strike over what she called the “inhumane and bloodthirsty hunt” of her son.

Ángeles Béjar locked herself in the 19th-century Divina Pastora church in the city of Motril, according to local news agency Efe, saying she would stay in the church “indefinitely, day and night”.

She declared a hunger strike until people called off what she called the “unwarranted, inhumane and bloodthirsty hunt” of her son.

Rubiales has faced repeated calls to step down from his position as the head of Spain’s football association after he grabbed Spanish striker Jenni Hermoso and kissed her mouth during the Women’s World Cup medal ceremony.

Hermoso has since said the action was not consensual. She said the situation had left her feeling “vulnerable and a victim of aggression”. In her statement she described the kiss as “an impulsive act, sexist, out of place and without any type of consent from my part. In short, I wasn’t respected.”

FIFA, the sports governing body, has suspended Rubiales for 90 days starting on 26 August. The Spanish FA has stuck firmly by its boss throughout and has even threatened to sue Hermoso.

Separately on 28 August, a Spanish court opened a preliminary investigation to see if what took place was a sexual assault.

Spain’s labour minister and second deputy prime minister Yolanda Diaz has also weighed in, according to Reuters. She said male chauvinism is “systemic” in the country.

Following the meeting of the Spanish FA, Rfef, on Friday 25 August, where Rubiales refused to resign, Diaz said: “On Friday we saw the worst of Spanish society, of the structural machismo of this country.”

“They clapped and humiliated and made fun of a person they had the obligation to protect under the sports law and far from doing that, they inflicted more damage, more pain, more vexation.”

However, she added that Spanish society is predominantly “feminist” and “an example in the world”.

“That's why these behaviours are much more shocking,” she told reporters following a meeting with the footballers’ union Futpro.

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