Amnesty says Airbnb acting in bad faith on 'settlements'

Amnesty International claims Airbnb is acting in bad faith by failing to inform investors of its activities in Judea and Samaria.

Elad Benari ,

Airbnb
Airbnb
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Amnesty International on Wednesday accused Airbnb of acting in bad faith towards investors by failing to inform them of its politically sensitive business activities in Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria, Reuters reports.

The accusation comes a day before Airbnb makes its stock market debut on Thursday

Amnesty, which wants Airbnb to delist rental properties in Judea and Samaria, said in a statement that the company should have mentioned them in the “Risk Factors” section of a Nov. 16 regulatory filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

“Airbnb stock is expected to be purchased by investment and pension funds across the world, which could mean that a large number of people will indirectly hold investments in Airbnb without understanding the full ramifications,” the human rights group said, according to Reuters.

Airbnb did not provide comment on Amnesty’s charge. A company spokesman referred Reuters to a statement it made in 2019 saying it would not take profits from its listings in Judea and Samaria.

Airbnb caused an uproar in November of 2018 when it decided to remove listings for about 200 homes in Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria.

In Florida, Governor Ron DeSantis agreed to place Airbnb on the state’s scrutinized companies list which prohibits state investment in companies that boycott Israel.

Texas similarly prohibited investment in Airbnb, placing the company on the state comptroller’s “list of companies that boycott Israel pursuant to Chapter 808 of the Texas government code,” which prohibits investment in companies that boycott Israel.

In addition, an independent board in Illinois voted to notify Airbnb that it is violating state laws barring the economic boycott of Israel, making Illinois the first state to take firm action against the online lodging company.

Subsequently, the company announced that it will not remove listings in Israeli towns in Judea and Samaria from its website, as part of a court settlement with American Jewish plaintiffs who had sued it.

Airbnb was included in a list published by the United Nations’ human rights office of 112 companies which business ties to “settlements”.



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