UPDATE: The U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman has released a statement about the move:
"The United States supports and respects the decision of the Government of Israel to deny entry to the Tlaib/Omar Delegation.
The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel is not free speech. Rather, it is no less than economic warfare designed to delegitimize and ultimately destroy the Jewish State. Israel properly has enacted laws to bar entry of BDS activists under the circumstances present here, and it has every right to protect its borders against those activists in the same manner as it would bar entrants with more conventional weapons.
Initially, Israel had indicated that it would accept the Tlaib/Omar Delegation, and use their visit as an opportunity to engage with and educate the delegation members with regard to Israel’s vibrant and robust democracy, its religious tolerance and its ethnic diversity. Unfortunately, the itinerary of the Tlaib/Omar Delegation leaves no room for that opportunity. In contrast to the nearly 70 freshmen members of Congress who just recently completed, or who are currently pursuing, a balanced visit to Israel that includes meetings with both Israeli and Palestinian leaders, the Tlaib/Omar Delegation has limited its exposure to tours organized by the most strident of BDS activists. This trip, pure and simple, is nothing more than an effort to fuel the BDS engine that Congresswomen Tlaib and Omar so vigorously support.
Like the United States, Israel is a nation of laws. We support Israel’s application of its laws in this case."
The Israeli government announced Thursday morning pro-BDS movement and anti-Semitic Democrat lawmakers Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib will not be allowed to enter the country. The two were scheduled to land in Tel Aviv on Friday. Tlaib has been informed she can apply for a humanitarian visa if she would like to visit her Palestinian family. Israel has a long standing policy to block BDS supporters from entering the country.
From the Jerusalem Post:
Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely confirmed that Israel will not allow the congresswomen from entering Israel, although an official comment from the government has not yet been published.
"Israel has decided," she said. "We will not allow the congresswomen to enter the country. We will not allow anyone who denies our right to exist in the world to enter the country. In principle, this is a very correct decision."Foreign Minister Israel Katz said that he supports the ban "due to their blatant support for the boycott of the State of Israel, terrorism against Israel and minimizing the Holocaust.
"Furthermore, the planned visit they have prepared is entirely aimed at provocation and incitement against the State of Israel, and not to study the State of Israel's activities," he said. "A self-respecting state does not allow those who undermine its existence to enter its borders and continue incitement."
Last month and one day prior to announcing her planned trip to Israel, Omar introduced a Boycott, Sanction and Divestment resolution on Capitol Hill in partnership with Tlaib. In doing so, she compared Israeli treatment of Palestinians to the Nazis. Tlaib did the same during a speech on the House floor.
The BDS movement is designed to destroy Israel's economy in an effort to take down the country. Some background:
BDS supporters claim that they want to put economic pressure on Israel to reach agreement on a peaceful and fair solution to its conflict with the Palestinians, and their message has found increasing traction in the U.S. The controversial Democratic representatives Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar have lent the movement high-profile support. The New York Times Magazine recently published a pro-BDS cover story written by a highly controversial political journalist. Altogether, 31 universities have passed BDS measures since 2015, and, since 2005, 127 such measures have been considered.
The truth is that many of the students and activists who support the movement have been duped into thinking they’re supporting a noble cause. In fact, BDS is little more than a ploy established and run by radical anti-Semites who deny Israel’s right to exist and seek to destroy it.
You don’t need to take our word for it: Let Barghouti speak for himself. He believes that Israel is an illegitimate state.
Earlier today, President Trump urged the country to block their entry.
This is a developing story. Stay tuned for updates.