But then what happened was that Palestinian activists got very upset that she agreed to the Israeli restrictions not to advocate a boycott of Israel while she was visiting. The Israeli foreign ministry eventually granted the request to Tlaib so that she could visit her grandmother, but the message from Israel was clear!
She said visiting her family under such "oppressive conditions meant to humiliate me would break my grandmother's heart".
"They don't want her to come", said the congresswoman's uncle Bassam Tlaib. "Why didn't she ask her grandmother for her opinion about the Israeli preconditions?" asked one Palestinian on Facebook.
Trump also had been critical of Omar and Tlaib as members of "the squad", which refers to four congresswomen of color, including Reps.
The boycott movement, formally known as the Boycott, Divest, and Sanctions movement, aims to end worldwide support for Israel because of its policies towards Palestinians, as well as its continued construction of West Bank settlements, considered a violation of global law.
The two newly elected Muslim members of Congress have sparred with Trump, who tweeted before the decision that it would be a "show of weakness" to allow them in. Tlaib told NBC Saturday from the West Bank, which has been held by Israel since 1967 after capturing the land from Jordan during the Six-Day War. "They hate Israel & all Jewish people, & there is nothing that can be said or done to change their minds".
Her further noted that decision was made after the Israeli government received a copy of the congresswomen's itinerary, which illustrated that the trip's "sole objective is to strengthen the boycott against us" in an attempt "deny Israel's legitimacy". I can not allow the Israeli government to take that away from them or to use my deep desire to see my grandmother, potentially for the last time, as a political bargaining chip.
"It was pretty traumatic what I had to go through with the state of Israel and some of the demands that they were asking of me", she said Friday night. Tlaib's office could not immediately be reached for comment on the letter's authenticity. It sounds like now the Israeli government is going to give access to Congresswoman Tlaib to visit her elderly grandmother. "As soon as she was granted permission, she grandstanded & loudly proclaimed she would not visit Israel".
Netanyahu tweeted that "the itinerary of the two Congresswomen reveals that the sole objective of their visit is to harm Israel and increase incitement against it", and he pointed out that there trip was funded by the Palestinian organization Miftah, "an avid supporter of BDS, and among whose members are those who have expressed support for terrorism against Israel".
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"Miftah does not sponsor personal or individual or humanitarian visits nor do we intervene on behalf of any such petitions". And Tlaib tweeted a photo of her Palestinian grandmother.
Tlaib wrote a letter to Israeli authorities after they announced she and Omar wouldn't be allowed into Israel, saying a visit might be the last time she would be able to see her grandmother and vowing to "not promote boycotts against Israel during my visit".
Tlaib had initially hoped to arrive in Israel on Sunday with Omar on a trip focused mainly on viewing the impact of recent USA policies and aid cuts on Palestinians.
On Thursday, Trump said it would show "great weakness" if Israel allowed entry to Omar and Tlaib.
It was the latest twist in a saga hinging on Israel's war against those who would boycott it over its treatment of the Palestinians. They are USA citizens.
"It is an affront that Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, under pressure from President Trump, would deny entry to representatives of the USA government", Omar said in a statement. It marked a glaring departure from the tradition of American politicians leaving such disputes at the water's edge.
In considering the ban, Israel had cited the congresswomen's support for a boycott against Israel, according to an Israeli government official.
"After countless zigzags between what is right for Israel and what is right for Trump, Netanyahu chose Trump", analyst Shimrit Meir wrote in the top-selling Israeli daily Yediot Aharonot.
Under Israeli law, the government does not allow those who support the boycott movement to enter Israeli territory.