Israel partially relents – Would allow Tlaib to visit family in the West Bank – Tlaib refuses to accept

A day after refusing to permit two Muslim members of Congress to visit Israel, the Israeli government partially relented and allowed entry to Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) for the purpose of visiting her elderly grandmother who lives in the West Bank.

Tlaib had written a letter to Israeli Interior Minister Ayreh Deri asking for entry on a humanitarian basis:

Minutes after learning that she would indeed be allowed to travel to the West Bank, Tlaib announced via Twitter that she had changed her mind and would not make the trip, citing her ongoing fight against racism, oppression, and injustice:

All of the back and forth between Tlaib, Omar, and the Israeli government was largely due to President Donald Trump’s insistence on getting in the middle of the impasse, tweeting out Thursday that Israel should refuse to allow the two members of Congress passage to the country, despite a long tradition of American allies allowing fact-finding missions. Since the U.S. gives Israel $4 billion annually, that seems like the least Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu can do. As Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) noted Thursday:

“If Israel doesn’t want members of the United States Congress to visit their country, to get a first-hand look at what’s going on, and I have been there many, many times, but if he doesn’t want members to visit maybe he can respectfully decline the billions of dollars that we give to Israel.”

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