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Airbnb Shoots Down Rumors it has Reversed Decision to Ban Listings in Historic Judea, Samaria

12-17-2018

Airbnb says recent reports that the company has reversed its decision to ban home listings in Judea and Samaria are "inaccurate."

"The reports issued earlier today are inaccurate," the company said in a statement. 

The Israeli newspaper, Haaretz, reported Monday that Airbnb decided not to implement the ban after Israeli Tourism Minister Yariv Levin met with Airbnb Vice President Chris Lehane in Israel. 

Before Airbnb debunked the rumors, company, Levin expressed his support for the alleged move, calling it "a step in the right direction," Haaretz reported Monday.

While Airbnb says the reports are wrong, it does not support the Boycott, Sanctions, and Divestment (BDS) movement. 

"Airbnb expressed its unequivocal rejection of the BDS movement and communicated its commitment to develop its business in Israel, enabling more tourists from around the world to enjoy the wonders of the country and its people," the statement continues. 

"We are here to meet with a variety of stakeholders and as a result of our meetings have an even deeper understanding that this is an incredibly complex and emotional issue. Airbnb communicated that we are developing the tools needed to implement our policy and that process includes continuing our dialogue with the Government of Israel and other stakeholders."

Airbnb sparked outrage last month when it announced its decision to not allow Israeli listings in Judea and Samaria, also known as the West Bank.

"We concluded that we should remove listings in Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank that are at the core of the dispute between Israelis and Palestinians," a statement on Airbnb's website reads.

The noted in a statement that the settlements are considered illegal by the United Nations. 

"Our hope is that someday sooner rather than later, a framework is put in place where the entire global community is aligned so there will be a resolution to this historic conflict and a clear path forward for everybody to follow," the statement continued. 

While many people applauded Airbnb's decision, others called it blatant anti-Semitism. 

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