Airbnb under fire for West Bank listings
Airbnb has come under fire from Palestinian officials and activists for listing dozens of houses for rent in the illegal Israeli settlements of the West Bank. Critics accuse the website of profiting from stolen Palestinian land.
The US-based online service advertises hundreds of accommodations for tourists ?in Israel? that are, in fact, situated in the West Bank, meaning potential clients will most probably not comprehend that they will be vacationing on illegally occupied land.
One such listing flagged by Al Jazeera that describes a three-bedroom rental home??15 minutes from Jerusalem??as??inspiring,??in reality offers accommodation in the West Bank settlement of Tekoa, which is now under Israeli military control. In accordance with the Oslo Accords, it should have been returned to the Palestinian Authority by 1999, but this never happened.
Another controversial listing offers a cottage in the settlement of Efrat, which was established on Palestinian land south of Jerusalem in 1983, claiming it is in Israel.
The online service has denied any wrongdoing, claiming that it has proceeded in accordance with the law and its own internal rules.