The Timbers Army will meet with Major League Soccer officials next week to discuss the ban on flags bearing an antifascist symbol at games.
MLS banned soccer fans nationwide from displaying the Iron Front symbol—a circle encompassing three arrows—on flags or banners during games. Portland fans say the symbol, which has been donned by antifascist protesters during sometimes violent protests, is not political but rather a beacon of inclusivity.
After meeting for the second time with the Timbers' front office, the Timbers Army and the 107 Independent Supporters Council, the nonprofit behind the fan group, plan to take their concerns to MLS's president, Mark Abbott, during a Sept. 19 meeting in Las Vegas.
The planned meeting comes after the Timbers Arm and 107IST—as well as representatives from Western States Center, the Oregon chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations, the Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education—brought concerns to the Timbers front office.
"In the meeting, the community representatives provided input on the Iron Front imagery, its history, what it represents today, what it means to them personally as often-targeted members of the community, and offered suggestions for going forward," the 107IST said in a statement. "The Timbers Front Office was very receptive to the discussion and the input from the community members."
After an Aug. 31 game at Providence Park, several Timbers Amy members, including Cider Riot owner Abram Goldman-Armstrong, were issued three-game bans by MLS for flying Iron Front flags.
In response, fans brought banners reading "You Can't Stop Us," and "Iron Will, United Front," to a Sept. 7 Timbers game.
The 107IST said it "sincerely hopes that these meetings will move the league closer to revising the code of conduct in a way that makes it truly inclusive for all by consulting with impacted groups and human rights experts."
The Timbers front office said in a tweet today that it is "pleased with the progress taking place and to have been able to facilitate [its] supporters and MLS getting together regarding the fan code of conduct next week."
It continued: "We look forward to continued healthy, productive discussions with one another."