(SOUNDBITE) (ENGLISH) U.S. REPRESENTATIVE RASHIDA TLAIB, A DEMOCRAT FROM MICHIGAN SAYING: "It is unfortunate that Prime Minister Netanyahu has apparently taken a page out of Trump's book." Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib held back tears as she and fellow Congresswoman Ilhan Omar denounced Israel's decision to restrict their travel to the region.
(SOUNDBITE) (ENGLISH) U.S. REPRESENTATIVE ILHAN OMAR SAYING: "Donald Trump would love nothing more than to use this issue to pit Muslims and Jewish Americans against each other." The Congresswomen said its their responsibility as elected officials to conduct oversight over the aid the U.S. gives Israel, which totals $3.8 billion annually.
Bowing to pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump, Israel last week initially blocked a visit by the two muslim congresswomen, citing a law that allows the government to deny entry to those who advocate for boycotting Israeli products.
Prime Minister Netanyahu said that barring their visit was meant to prevent them harming Israel.
The lawmakers, the first two Muslim women elected to Congress, were set to tour the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
Israel then eased restrictions for Tlaib, after she asked for permission to visit her grandmother.
But after all the political controversy- the Michigan representative ultimately canceled her visit.
(SOUNDBITE) (ENGLISH) U.S. REPRESENTATIVE RASHIDA TLAIB, A DEMOCRAT FROM MICHIGAN SAYING: "She said I'm her dream manifested.
I am her free bird.
So why would I come back and be caged and bowed down when my election rose her head up high."