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May 6, 2021 4:53 pm

Top US Jewish Group Calls for Rashida Tlaib to Remove ‘Falsehood’ About Israelis Setting Fire to Palestinian Fields

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US Congresswoman Rashia Tlaib of Michigan. Photo: Reuters / Rebecca Cook.

A leading US Jewish group called on US Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) to remove a tweet that accused Israel of “apartheid” and “stealing Palestinian homes and burning their lands” as she shared an account of Israelis setting fires to Palestinian fields that was retracted by the Israeli NGO that originated it.

[email protected], you shared a falsehood about Israeli Jews setting fire to Palestinian fields. This ugly claim has been retracted. You’re a member of Congress. Take down your tweet. Or is it okay to perpetuate untruths when they fit your policy agenda?” the American Jewish Committee (AJC) tweeted Thursday.

On Wednesday, Tlaib retweeted an article about fires near the Palestinian village of Burin, drawing from a Palestinian media sources and a May 4 tweet by the left-wing NGO B’Tselem, which shared a photo of the flames and blamed Israeli “settlers.”

“Stealing Palestinian homes and burning their lands. The actions of an apartheid state. We cannot stand by and watch this happen,” Tlaib wrote, tagging the account of US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. “Billions of US taxpayers dollars support Netanyahu’s government and this racist violence. We must condemn this swiftly.”

But as media reports emerged that the fires were in fact started by Palestinian arsonists, the Israeli NGO later said that the “The fires in Burin tonight are being re-examined. I will update with any new information I have,” according to the Jerusalem Post, which said that no further information followed.

The Samaria Regional Council, which serves settlers in the northern West Bank, told the Post it would sue B’Tselem for slander over the accusations.

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