Americas

Biden hails pro-Palestine lawmaker Rashida Tlaib as a 'fighter'

'You’re a fighter, and God thank you for being a fighter,' US President Joe Biden tells Rashida Tlaib

Michael Gabriel Hernandez   | 19.05.2021
Biden hails pro-Palestine lawmaker Rashida Tlaib as a 'fighter' Palestinian-American lawmaker Rashida Tlaib

WASHINGTON

US President Joe Biden lauded Palestinian-American lawmaker Rashida Tlaib as a "fighter" on Tuesday, saying he prays for her family in the occupied West Bank. 

"I tell you what Rashida, I want to say to you, I admire your intellect, I admire your compassion and I admire your concern for so many other people," Biden said at the Ford Rouge Electric Vehicle Center in Michigan, which is located near Tlaib's congressional district.

“And it’s from my heart, I pray that your grandmom and family are well. I promise you, I’m going to do everything to see that they are, on the West Bank. You’re a fighter, and God thank you for being a fighter," added Biden.

Tlaib has been a vocal critic of Biden's policy vis-a-vis Israel and Palestine amid Tel Aviv's continued offensive on the Gaza Strip that has claimed the lives of 217, including 63 children and 36 women

Speaking to MSNBC on Monday, Tlaib accused Biden of being one-sided in his approach and said the Biden administration only speaks up on human rights "when they talk about Israeli citizens that are of a certain faith."

"That is what is telling about what is happening," she said. "It's shocking, the hypocrisy of us saying we need to be stewards of human rights except for Palestinians, and they're taking orders, that's exactly what's happening, they're taking orders from Netanyahu who is on corruption charges for stealing from his own people."

"I hope that my president, our president, speaks up, and speaks truth about what is happening because I know they know, and I know they're enabling it by sitting there and saying these kinds of passive" statements, she said.

While Biden voiced support for a ceasefire during a Monday telephone call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the White House did not specify in its statement if the president believes one should be implemented immediately.

Spokeswoman Jen Psaki did not offer additional details when pressed by reporters on Tuesday, saying instead "I will leave the description to the readout we put out last evening."

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