Ilhan Omar: Israeli Ban Attempt to ‘Suppress Our Ability to Do Our Jobs’

ST PAUL, MN - AUGUST 19: U.S. Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) hold a news conference on August 19, 2019 in St. Paul, Minnesota. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu blocked a planned trip by Omar and Tlaib to visit Israel and Palestine citing their support for the …
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Freshman Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) claimed Monday that Israel’s decision to ban her and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) from entering that country was done to “suppress” the far-left lawmakers’ ability to fulfill their roles as elected officials.

“The decision to ban me and my colleague, the first two American-Muslim women elected to Congress, is nothing less than an attempt by an ally of the United States to suppress our ability to do our jobs as elected officials,” Omar, flanked by Tlaib, said in a press conference at the Minnesota State Capitol.

Omar’s comments come after Israel announced Omar and Tlaib are barred from visiting the Jewish state, citing their support for the antisemitic Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. In a letter to Israel’s interior minister, Aryeh Deri, Tlaib pleaded to be allowed entry to visit her 90-year-old grandmother — a request the official granted on a humanitarian basis.

However, the following day, Tlaib said she would opt against visiting her relatives and launched into a vicious tirade against Israel, claiming the Jewish state employs “oppressive” and “racist” policies. As Breitbart News reported, the group that organized the Democrat congresswomen’s trip is run by Palestinian extremist and Israel boycott defender Hanan Ashrawi.

In response to the ban, Omar and Tlaib shared an antisemitic cartoon by an artist who participated in Iran’s annual Holocaust denial contest on their Instagram accounts on Friday. It depicted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Donald Trump silencing the two women.

On Sunday, Netanyahu explained his government’s decision, saying that while he has deep respect for Congress, the BDS movement cannot be tolerated.

“We respect all members of Congress. Our directive is to facilitate, on a regular and automatic basis, the entry of all members of Congress, Democratic and Republican. Just one week ago, I met with dozens of Democratic members of Congress. Ambassador Dermer enunciated this precise policy,” Netanyahu told reporters ahead of his trip to Ukraine. “There is only one exception and it is the BDS law that obligates us to evaluate the entry of people who support BDS.

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