Rashida Tlaib Claims Grandmother Told Her Not to Visit

ST PAUL, MN - AUGUST 19: U.S. Reps. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) and Ilhan Omar (D-MN) 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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Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) spoke to the press alongside Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) Monday afternoon amid the fallout with Israel and said her grandmother discouraged her from visiting after Israel granted her permission to come into the country.

Tlaib sent a letter addressed to Israeli Interior Minister Aryeh Deri last week, begging to see her aging grandmother. The letter followed Israel’s decision to bar her – as well as Omar – from visiting the country due to her ongoing support of the BDS movement.

“I would like to request admittance to Israel in order to visit my relatives, and specifically my grandmother, who is in her 90s and lives in Beit Ur al-Fouqa,” Tlaib wrote.

“This could be my last opportunity to see her. I will respect any restrictions and will not promote boycotts against Israel during my visit,” she added.

Israel granted her permission, but she swiftly reversed positions, citing “oppressive conditions.”

“When I won, it gave the Palestinian people hope that someone will finally speak the truth about the inhumane conditions,” she tweeted in part Friday.

“I have decided that visiting my grandmother under these oppressive conditions stands against everything I believe in–fighting against racism, oppression & injustice,” she added:

During the press conference Monday, Tlaib said her grandmother discouraged her from coming and added that she cannot travel to Israel unless she is able to go as a “free American United States congresswoman” who can plead on her grandmother’s behalf to Palestinian and Israeli organizations.

“She said I’m her dream manifested, I’m her free bird, so why would I come back and be caged and bow down when my election rose her head up high [and] gave her dignity for the first time,” Tlaib stated.

She added:

So through tears, at 3 o’clock in the morning, we all decided as a family that I could not go until I was a free American United States congresswoman, coming there not only to see my grandmother but to talk to Palestinian and Israeli organizations that believed that my grandmother deserved human dignity as much as anyone else does.

President Trump responded to Tlaib’s decision to cancel her trip last week, writing that Tlaib’s grandmother came out as the “only real winner”:

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