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US governor to punish Airbnb for removing Israel settlement listings

January 17, 2019 at 10:12 am

In aiding and abetting this project, Airbnb is complicit in ongoing war crimes. Airbnb Office [FlickR]

The newly-sworn-in Florida governor, Ron DeSantis, said yesterday that his state will take action against online holiday rental company Airbnb for removing listings in illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank.

“We have a moral obligation to oppose the Airbnb policy,” DeSantis said, adding: “It targets Jews specifically. I think that’s wrong,” the Jerusalem Post reported.

DeSantis continued: “Airbnb claims it is a company of inclusion, and yet this policy only affects Jews who have homes in the West Bank. It does not appear to apply to anyone else on the face of the Earth.”

DeSantis’ remarks came in reaction to a decision by Airbnb in November that it would no longer list rental properties in Israeli settlements, which international law designates as illegal.

Israel’s Strategic Affairs Minister, Gilad Erdan, praised DeSantis’ comments, saying: “This is an important decision that will strengthen the struggle against antisemitic boycott organisations.”

“We will continue to act in all possible ways to nullify the decision discriminating against citizens of the State of Israel and harming them economically because of their place of residence,” he added.

READ: Israel to seize 34 acres of land in Ramallah for settlement