- Title: Israel bars U.S. lawmakers' visit after Trump weighs in
- Date: 15th August 2019
- Summary: RAMALLAH, WEST BANK (AUGUST 15, 2019) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (English) PALESTINE LIBERATION ORGANIZATION (PLO) OFFICIAL, HANAN ASHRAWI, SAYING: "This is really unacceptable, it's a direct insult to the American people, it's a direct insult to the representatives of the American people, and it's a way in which Israel shows that it is a dictatorship that cannot tolerate any criticism and that it will prevent anybody from interacting with the Palestinian people, or seeing the reality of this cruel and illegal occupation on the ground." FLOWER ASHRAWI WALKING AWAY BEIT UR AL-FAUQA, WEST BANK (AUGUST 15, 2019) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF UNCLE OF RASHIDA TLAIB, BASSAM TLAIB, TALKING TO MAN (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) UNCLE OF RASHIDA TLAIB, BASSAM TLAIB, SAYING: "It is unfair decision, Rashida is Palestinian, she is originally from Palestine. Her grandfather and father are originally from Palestine. She wanted to visit her country of Palestine. She wanted to visit her family and relatives. It is unfair that Rashida is banned from visiting Palestine." TLAIB SITTING WITH MAN ACRE, ISRAEL (AUGUST 15, 2019) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF CO-FOUNDER OF Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement, OMAR BARGHOUTHI (SOUNDBITE) (English) CO-FOUNDER OF BOYCOTT, DIVESTMENT, SANCTIONS (BDS) MOVEMENT, OMAR BARGHOUTHI, SAYING: "I think targeting the congresswomen Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar, is also ethically and politically motivated. It is no coincidence that they are both women of colour. Israel fears that there is an intersectionality, a connection, between the Palestinian struggle for rights and struggles of many justice movements, black justice movements, climate, LGBT and others, for their rights as well."
- Embargoed: 29th August 2019 19:32
- Keywords: Congress women Rashiba Tlaib Ilhan Omar Israel ban
- Location: JERUSALEM / WASHINGTON, D.C. AND MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA, UNITED STATES / RAMALLAH, BEIT UR AL-FAUQA, WEST BANK / ACRE, ISRAEL
- City: JERUSALEM / WASHINGTON, D.C. AND MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA, UNITED STATES / RAMALLAH, BEIT UR AL-FAUQA, WEST BANK / ACRE, ISRAEL
- Country: Israel
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace
- Reuters ID: LVA005ASBXP3B
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Israel will bar a visit by U.S. Democratic Congresswomen Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Thursday (August 15), shortly after U.S. President Donald Trump called on Israel not to let them in.
The pair, the first two Muslim women elected to Congress, are members of the Democratic party's progressive wing and sharp critics of Israel's policy toward the Palestinians.
Democrats in the United States joined Palestinians in strongly condemning Israel's decision.
Israel had initially chosen to allow the visit. But on Wednesday (August 14), Netanyahu held consultations with cabinet members and advisers revisiting the decision. A source who took part in the consultation told Reuters that Israel backtracked because of pressure from Trump.
"In a discussion held two weeks ago all the officials were in favour of letting them in but after Trump's pressure they reversed the decision," the source said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Tlaib and Omar have voiced support for the pro-Palestinian Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement. Under Israeli law, BDS backers can be denied entry to Israel.
Trump has vented in recent months against Tlaib, Omar and two other Democratic congresswomen of colour, accusing them of hostility to Israel in what has widely been seen as a drumming up of Republican votes for his 2020 reelection bid.
(Production: Roleen Tafakji, Ismail Khadder, Saed Hawari, Rami Amichay)
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