Israel grants Rep. Rashida Tlaib entry to visit her grandmother

Israel grants Rep. Rashida Tlaib entry to visit her grandmother

Published
Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Minn.) says she is turning down Israel's offer to let her visit. (Twitter/RashidaTlaib)

WASHINGTON – An agreement has been reached to allow one of the two U.S. congresswomen barred from visiting Israel because of their support for a boycott of the Jewish State to enter the country, Israeli Interior Minister Aryeh Deri announced Friday morning.

“Congresswoman Tlaib has sent tonight a letter to Minister Deri in which she committed to accept all the demands of Israel to respect the restrictions imposed on her in the visit, and she also promised not to advance boycotts against Israel during her visit,” Deri said in a statement to CNN.

Tlaib (D-Mich.) is of Palestinian descent and was born in Detroit. Her 90-year-old grandmother and other extended family members live in the West Bank. The area has been under Israeli control since the 1967 Six Day War.

The agreement grants Tlaib entry on humanitarian grounds. She asked the Israeli government for permission to visit her family. The request was granted.

On Thursday, Deri announced that Tlaib and fellow Democrat Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota would not be allowed to visit Israel. Both lawmakers support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement and both have been accused of making anti-Semitic remarks on several occasions.

Omar is still barred from visiting Israel. She and Tlaib are the first two Muslim women to serve in Congress. They are also the first U.S. lawmakers to be barred from visiting Israel.

The ban was announced shortly after President Donald Trump took to Twitter to urge that the congresswomen be denied entry to Israel.

Tlaib and Omar tweeted their disdain for the decision.

Democrats condemned the decision to bar the congresswomen.

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the preeminent pro-Israel lobbying group in the U.S., said the group disagreed with the decision.

The congresswomen had planned to tour the West Bank as part of a congressional delegation trip.

Omar sits on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Late-Friday morning Tlaib tweeted that she will not visit Israel because she rejects the government’s terms for trip.

Deri subsequently accused Tlaib of using her grandmother as a provocation for the request for the trip.

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