Evangelical Leaders Condemn Airbnb Boycott of Judea and Samaria Properties

A picture shows the logo of online lodging service Airbnb displayed on a computer screen in the Airbnb offices in Paris on April 21, 2015. AFP PHOTO / MARTIN BUREAU / AFP PHOTO / MARTIN BUREAU (Photo credit should read MARTIN BUREAU/AFP/Getty Images)
MARTIN BUREAU/AFP/Getty

(JNS) — Evangelical leaders sent a letter on Monday to Airbnb, slamming its decision to remove listings in Judea and Samaria.

“Evangelicals represent 25%-30% of the American population and strongly support the nation of Israel, the birthplace of our own Christian heritage,” reads the letter sent by the 38 leaders. “Some of our leadership were particularly active in the creation of many state laws designed to regulate against commercial discrimination of this nature. We will request of state authorities that Airbnb be added to their list of companies prohibited from any state investment.”

“Airbnb’s discriminatory action has no place in our community,” it adds. “As leaders of national and international Evangelical organizations and communities, we urge Airbnb to rescind their decision to discriminate against Jewish-owned listings in Judea and Samaria.”

Signatories included, but were not limited to, former Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), the Latino Coalition for Israel, Family Research Council, Faith & Freedom Coalition and Hope Christian Church in Maryland.

“Airbnb’s actions are clearly anti-Semitic,” said Bachmann. “This is blatant racism and bigoted discrimination.”

“Airbnb has singled out Jewish persons and the State of Israel for discriminatory treatment, while continuing to list properties in other disputed territories and conflict areas around the globe,” said Latino Coalition for Israel president Mario Bramnick. “Moreover, it continues to list Palestinian-owned properties in Judea and Samaria; only Jewish-owned properties have been singled [out].”

Jim Garlow, founder and CEO of Well Versed, said: “Given the fact that Israel is the only democracy in the entire Middle East, one would think that Airbnb would not succumb to the inexcusable prejudice, blatant intolerance and Israelaphobia demonstrated by their anti-Semitic stance.”

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