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Israel calls off legislators' US trip
Israeli parliament speaker calls off legislators' US trip after US denies lawmaker visa
By The Associated Press

JERUSALEM (AP) ' Israel's parliamentary speaker has called off a legislative delegation's visit to the U.S. after Washington denied an ultranationalist lawmaker a visa.

Three lawmakers were to attend a women's empowerment conference in the U.S. capital in late March. But Knesset speaker Reuven Rivlin canceled the trip Monday, saying the unrelated visa denial was "an affront to the entire Knesset."

The State Department won't let Michael Ben-Ari of the National Union Party enter the United States because he considers himself a disciple of the slain extremist Rabbi Meir Kahane.

Kahane preached expelling Arabs from Israel, the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Israel banned Kahane's Kach Party from parliament in 1988. Washington designates Kach a terror organization.

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