The number of tourists visiting Israeli towns in Judea and Samaria spiked after Airbnb blacklisted Jewish communities in those areas.
By The Algemeiner and World Israel News Staff
The number of tourists visiting Israeli settlements in the West Bank reportedly doubled this past weekend following Airbnb’s decision to delist lodgings in the communities.
According to a segment aired on Army Radio on Wednesday, the number of visitors jumped from 1,500 to 3,000.
The segment also cited owners of B&Bs in the settlements as reporting a surge of interest in their offerings following the Airbnb move last Monday to remove 200 listings.
“Rather than wrecking tourism in Judea and Samaria, Airbnb is only making us stronger, with its ridiculous and anti-Semitic decision,” Samaria Regional Council chief Yossi Dagan told Army Radio.
Airbinb announced its decision to blacklist these communities in statement last week in which it referred to Judea and Samaria as “the occupied West Bank.” The move was denounced by Israeli officials as “anti-Semitic,” and arrives just a few years after Airbnb faced alarming accusations of rampant racial discrimination on its platform, which seemed to be confirmed by a Harvard Business School study.
According to legal experts such as the the Lawfare Project’s Brooke Goldstein, Airbnb’s policy violates US anti-discrimination laws opening up the company to lawsuits.