House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Sunday defended Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) over remarks that equated the United States and Israel to the terrorist group Hamas.
Pelosi, during an appearance on CNN’s “State of the Union,” said Omar is a “valued member of our caucus” and that she had “clarified” her controversial comments.
“We did not rebuke her. We acknowledged that she made a clarification,” Pelosi said.
“They can say whatever they want,” Pelosi continued, referring to a group of House Democrats who urged Omar in a joint statement on June 9 to clarify what she meant in her remarks. “But what I’m saying, end of subject. She clarified, we thanked her, end of subject.
“Members did become concerned when the tweet that was put out equated the United States with Taliban and Hamas … and then she clarified it, and we thanked her for clarification,” the House Speaker added.
Omar last week shared footage of her asking Secretary of State Antony Blinken during a congressional hearing about how alleged victims of crimes could get justice without the involvement of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
“I know you oppose the court’s investigation in both Palestine and in Afghanistan,” Omar told Blinken. “I haven’t seen any evidence in either case that domestic courts both can and will prosecute alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity, and I would emphasize that in Israel and Palestine, this includes crimes committed by both Israeli security forces and Hamas. In Afghanistan, it includes crimes committed by the Afghan national government and the Taliban.
“So in both of these cases, if domestic courts can’t or won’t pursue justice, and we oppose the ICC, where do we think the victims of these supposed crimes can go for justice?”
Blinken replied that the ICC lacked jurisdiction to take up the cases, adding that absent a United Nations Security Council referral or a request by the state itself, “that’s not appropriate.”