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Rep. Ilhan Omar held secret fundraisers with accused terror financing groups, report says

Then-candidate for Minnesota State Representative, Ilhan Omar speaking at a Hillary for MN event at the U of MN. (Lorie Shaull/Wikimedia Commons)
March 27, 2019

Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar has been spotted holding secret fundraising events with groups tied to terrorism and anti-Semitism.

Two of Omar’s most recent appearances were separate charity events held by charity group Islamic Relief USA, and political action committee CAIR-CA, both of which have been accused of funding terrorism, The Washington Free Beacon reported last week.

Both events were closed to media and no materials were available that would’ve exposed the topics Omar discussed at her appearances.

Omar, a traditional Muslim, has been accused of anti-Semitism since she was cast in the spotlight during her Congressional campaign, and again since her swearing in. Now her seemingly close relationship with suspected terror financiers has prompted concerns over her interests.

“I just wonder what is Rep. Omar saying to a group of Islamic supporters that she feels is so secretive that she cannot say it to the American people, as a whole?” said Sarah Stern, founder and president of Endowment for Middle East Truth, a pro-Israel group that has criticized Omar’s anti-Semitic language.

“What is so secretive that it has to be off the record and closed to reporters? Will she say the same things in public to her Jewish voters in Minnesota that she says to her Islamic friends? What does this tell us about her openness, her honesty and her integrity?” Stern added.

Islamic Relief was investigated by Congress for its alleged funding of Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood. In 2017, Congress attempted to block U.S. taxpayer funds from the charity to prevent it from supporting terrorism.

“U.S. tax dollars cannot go to groups involved in funding terrorism,” Rep. Ron DeSantis told the Free Beacon at the time. “Any group tied to Hamas or the Muslim Brotherhood should be ineligible for funding.  It is a slap in the face of the American taxpayer to allow such groups to receive federal funding.”

In 2014, Israel banned Islamic Relief after an investigation showed their support of Hamas, and it arrested one of the group’s coordinators in Gaza who possessed documents proving the connection between the groups.

“The IRW is one of the sources of Hamas’s funding and a means for raising funds from various countries in the world,” Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon said at the time, according to Reuters. “We do not intend to allow it to function and abet terrorist activity against Israel.”

The group was also banned in the UAE, along with CAIR.

CAIR has also been named as a financier of Hamas and called out for its anti-Israel positions.

“CAIR’s anti-Israel agenda dates back to its founding by leaders of the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP), a Hamas affiliated anti-Semitic propaganda organization,” according to the Anti-Defamation League. “While CAIR has denounced specific acts of terrorism in the U.S. and abroad, for many years it refused to unequivocally condemn Palestinian terror organizations and Hezbollah by name, which the U.S. and international community have condemned and isolated.”

Several pro-Israel groups have called on House Democrats to remove Omar from the House Foreign Affairs Committee, citing her anti-Semitic comments and the secret fundraisers as behaviors that they say should disqualify her from presiding over the military alliance between the U.S. and Israel.