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Anti-War Committee denounces Israel’s ban of Omar and Tlaib

Statement by Anti-War Committee |
August 18, 2019
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Ilhan Omar.
Ilhan Omar.

Fight Back News Service is circulating the following August 15 statement from the Twin Cities based Anti-War Committee.

The Minnesota Anti-War Committee condemns the Israeli government’s August 15 decision not to allow US Representatives Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib from entering occupied Palestine, to which the Israeli state controls all access. Reps. Omar and Tlaib join the thousands of peace activists, human rights officials and people of conscience around the world who are denied entry over their support for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel and its Zionist policies of occupation, apartheid and settler-colonialism in Palestine. The two congresswomen also now share the experience of millions of diaspora Palestinians who live in forced exile, denied reentry to their homeland. Rep. Tlaib, a Palestinian-American, had planned to visit family in the occupied West Bank.

Representing Minnesota’s 5th Congressional District, Rep. Omar continues to face both racist incitement by President Trump and his supporters as well as dishonest allegations of anti-Semitism from her own Democratic Party. We commend Rep. Omar for her courage and steadfastness in the face of these attacks. Principled criticism of Israel is not anti-Semitism. We invite our supporters to join Rep. Omar in continued solidarity with the people of Palestine.

The Anti-War Committee continues our longstanding call for the total end to US aid to Israel. We maintain that Israel acts at the behest of US ruling class interests, as demonstrated by Israel’s announcement of the ban against Reps. Omar and Tlaib coming soon after a tweet by President Trump calling for it to do so. Far from being the so-called “only democracy in the Middle East,” Israel in fact is a profoundly undemocratic country, premised on the denial of Palestinian self-determination and functioning as a strategic outpost for US imperialism in the entire Middle East.

We encourage our supporters to join us at the MN State Board of Investment meeting on August 22 where we will pressure the State of Minnesota to divest from Elbit Systems, an Israeli company which profits from Israeli apartheid and from building the wall on the U.S./Mexico border. Minnesota should not invest in companies that profit from human rights abuses, nor in a country that bans our own member of Congress from entering to investigate human rights abuses.

We join with the U.S. Campaign for Palestinian Rights, Jewish Voice for Peace and the Council on American-Islamic Relations – MN in saying #LetThemIn!

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