Spanish politician Irene Montero has accused Spain’s football president, Luis Rubiales, of ‘sexual violence’ towards Jenni Hermoso after he kissed her on the lips during their World Cup final celebrations on Sunday.
Spain won the Women’s World Cup for the first time in their history with a 1-0 victory over England in Sydney, with Olga Carmona’s excellent first-half strike enough to see off the Lionesses.
However, Spain’s success comes following a major bust-up between the players, the Spanish Football Football Federation and the head coach Jorge Vilda, who was ignored by several members of the squad during their celebrations after beating England.
Rubiales has come under fire for backing Vilda when 15 Spain players withdrew from the national team before the tournament due to concerns over their mental health whilst in the squad.
And the president of Spain’s FA has caused further scrutiny due to his actions during the World Cup final celebrations on Sunday after he kissed Hermoso on the lips moments after she had collected her medal.
In a post on X, formerly known as Twitter, Montero, who is the Minister of Equality of Spain, slammed Rubiales’ decision to kiss Hermoso.
‘Let’s not take for granted that giving a kiss without consent is something that “happens”. It is a way of sexual violence that women suffer on a daily basis and up to now is invisible, and that we cannot normalise,’ Montero wrote.
‘It is the task of the whole society. Consent at the centre. Only yes is yes.’
Hermoso did not appear to be happy with Rubiales’ actions, as she told Spanish TV network La 1: ‘Eh… yeah, I did not enjoy that.’
In a statement on Sunday evening, Hermoso added: ‘It was a completely spontaneous mutual gesture due to the immense joy of winning a World Cup.
‘The president and I have a great relationship; his behaviour towards all of us has been exemplary, and it was a natural expression of affection and gratitude.
‘There’s no need to overanalyse a gesture of friendship and gratitude; we’ve won a World Cup, and we won’t stray from what’s important.’
When asked about his actions, Rubiales told Radio Marca: ‘There are idiots everywhere.
‘When two people have a minor show of affection, we can’t listen to idiocies. We are champions and that is what stays with me.’
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