U.S. Democratic Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib criticized Thursday, September 28th, 2023, the decision of the U.S. Biden administration to accept ‘Israel’ into the visa waiver program (VWP), underscoring its role in promoting the discriminatory practices of the Israeli occupation, particularly in its discrimination against Americans.
In a statement released late September, Tlaib said, “By moving forward with this decision, the U.S. The government is allowing a foreign government to discriminate against its own citizens based on protected class.”
As the Visa Waiver Program requires that all U.S. citizens are treated equally, Tlaib confirmed that there have been consistent reports of discrimination against Americans attempting to enter ‘Israel.
“No one should be discriminated against due to their national origin, ethnicity, or faith,” said the Palestinian-American woman in the U.S. House.
Tlaib added that the far-right Israeli government routinely discriminates against Americans seeking to enter Palestinian-occupied lands, citing Israel’s denial of her and Congresswoman Ilhan Omar’s entry in 2019, making it crystal clear that this decision enables further racist practices and violence towards Americans.
In this regard, she spotted light on Israel’s racism regarding the murder of Shireen Abu Akleh, saying the United States has yet to hold the Israeli government accountable.
11 civil society organizations have started a petition in opposition to the Biden administration’s admission of ‘Israel’ into the Visa Waiver Program, urging the U.S. government to reconsider its decision immediately.
On Wednesday, September 27, 2023, the Arab-American Anti-Discrimination Committee filed a federal lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and State, challenging their decision to grant visa waivers to Israeli citizens and asserting that ‘Israel’ has failed to meet all legal requirements for inclusion in the visa waiver program.