Michigan Congresswoman Tlaib Says She Won’t Visit Israel After Being Allowed – Detroit News Watch

(CNN) — Rep. Rashida Tlaib said Friday she would not visit Israel after the country granted permission for her to enter the country on humanitarian grounds to visit her family in the West Bank a day after blocking her and fellow Rep. Ilhan Omar from visiting the country.

“I have decided that visiting my grandmother under these oppressive conditions stands against everything I believe in–fighting against racism, oppression & injustice,” Tlaib said in a tweet. In a statement released shortly after her tweet, she said she has “decided not to travel” to the country.

Tlaib had asked Israeli Interior Minister Aryeh Deri for access so that she could visit her relatives, “and specifically my grandmother, who is in her 90s and lives in Beit Ur al-Fouqa. This could be my last opportunity to see her.”

The request from Tlaib of Michigan came a day after the country barred her and Omar, a freshman Democrat from Minnesota, from entering because of their support of a boycott against Israel. Israel’s decision to bar their entry was encouraged by President Donald Trump in a remarkable step both by the US President and his ally, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, to punish political opponents.

Deri announced Friday in a statement that Tlaib would be allowed to visit the after she, in a letter requesting permission to enter the country on humanitarian grounds, “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.”

Tlaib’s family in the West Bank slammed Israel over the “conditional visit” and insisted that it is a “natural right” to be able to visit relatives.

“We reject the decision of the Israeli occupation to ban the entry of Congresswomen Rashida Tlaib. This highlights how Israel antagonizes every individual or organization that support the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and rejects every attempt at explaining the reality of the Palestinian life under occupation,” Tlaib’s grandmother, Muftiya Tliab, and her uncle, Ghassan Tlaib, said in a statement to CNN.

The family statement continued, “It should be her natural right, not a favor to ask for, to visit her homeland and family.”

Tlaib’s relatives said they had wanted her to be able to visit as part of a delegation which was to include Omar, and are incensed by the restrictions being put on her visit.

Some of Tlaib’s family members even urged her not to make the trip under Israel’s restrictions, and only to come if it’s an official visit as an American congresswoman. Tlaib’s uncle suggested he could bring Tlaib’s grandmother to visit in the United States so the two could meet

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