Blood donation collectors thrown out of Israeli parliament

By Ori Lewis JERUSALEM (Reuters) – The speaker of Israel’s parliament ordered a blood-collection crew to leave the legislature’s premises on Wednesday after it turned down an offer of a blood donation from an Ethiopian-born lawmaker. Knesset member Pnina Tamano-Shata, 32, wanted to donate blood to a routine visit by an ambulance service but was told by a member of the crew that set criteria disqualified her because she emigrated to Israel from Ethiopia at age three. Israeli Health Ministry criteria bar people born in most African countries since 1977 from donating blood due to a fear that there is an increased risk they may carry the HIV virus. Tamano-Shata said ministry guidelines determine that Ethiopian-born Jews who emigrated to Israel when they were over two years old are ineligible to be blood donors.
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