Pressure is mounting on home rental website Airbnb to stop listing the West Bank properties of Jewish settlers, after 143,000 people signed an online petition calling on the company to take action.
The petition, signed by Jewish Voice for Peace, says: “Airbnb is directly helping Israeli settlers legitimise their occupation of stolen land, contributing to a key piece of the Israeli government’s decades-long policies of occupation, discrimination, and dispossession.”
There are about 300 settlement properties, many listed as being in “Israel,” and pro-Palestinian groups have pushed the U.S-based company on discrimination grounds, noting that the homes are “off-limits” to Palestinian users.
Airbnb’s anti-discrimination policy prohibits listings that promote racism, discrimination, or harm to individuals or groups, and requires all users to comply with local laws.
However, petitioners say some settlers leasing their homes through Airbnb “have explicitly discriminated against people with Arab or Palestinians names, in direct violation of Airbnb’s stated policies”.
The company has consistently stood by its decision to allow settlers to list their properties, saying: “We follow laws and regulations on where we can do business.”