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(JTA) Airbnb to cancel its ban on West Bank settlement listings In a reversal of a 2018 policy announcement, Airbnb will not remove West Bank settlement listings from its website.
by JTA | Apr 11, 2019

The policy change came in a court settlement on Monday between the vacation rental company and a dozen American Jewish plaintiffs who had sued the company, organised by the Shurat Hadin-Israel Law Center, a pro-Israel law organisation.

Airbnb announced in November that it would remove about 200 rental listings in West Bank settlements because it contended that the settlements “are at the core of the dispute between Israelis and Palestinians”. The movement to boycott Israel saw the decision as a victory.

But Airbnb never actually removed the listings. And, about a week after the decision, Shurat Hadin organised the suit on behalf of a dozen American Jewish families, most of whom own properties in West Bank settlements. The suit was filed under the Fair Housing Act, which was meant to prevent discrimination against minorities in the United States.

In the lawsuit, the plaintiffs claimed that Airbnb was discriminating against them for being Jewish, given that it still allowed listings by Palestinian Muslims and Christians in the West Bank.

New York City orders measles vaccination

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio declared a public health emergency on Tuesday over the measles outbreak in Brooklyn’s haredi Orthodox community.

De Blasio ordered unvaccinated people living in four ZIP codes in the Williamsburg neighbourhood to get the vaccine, or pay fines of up to $1 000 (R13 987)

There have been 285 reported cases of measles in Brooklyn’s Orthodox Jewish community since October, including 246 children, WCBS-TV reported, citing the health department.

“The measles vaccine works. It is safe, it is effective, it is time-tested. The faster everyone heeds the order, the faster we can lift it,” De Blasio said.

Ilhan Omar calls Stephen Miller a white nationalist

Right-wing critics railed against Representative Ilhan Omar for calling White House senior policy adviser Stephen Miller a “white nationalist” amid a string of tweets decrying the Trump administration’s hard-line immigration reform policies.

The detractors accused the Minnesota Democrat of targeting Jews – a claim she has heard several times since joining congress in January.

Omar targeted Miller, who is Jewish, just days after President Donald Trump said that the country could not take in any more refugees. “Our country is full, can’t come, I’m sorry,” Trump said during a speech on Saturday in Las Vegas at the Republican Jewish Coalition’s annual meeting.

Omar has had a strained relationship with the Jewish community since taking office, after employing anti-Semitic tropes about dual loyalty and Jews and money, and the resurfacing of past tweets considered anti-Semitic.

Omar’s tweet was accompanied by an article indicating that Miller had convinced Trump to appoint a tougher candidate to lead the Immigration and Customs Enforcement office.

Benny Gantz assists injured motorcyclist on Election Day

Benny Gantz, the leader of Israel’s Blue and White Party, was the first person on the scene after a motorcyclist was injured in an Election Day crash in southern Israel.

Gantz, who rides a motorcycle himself, called an ambulance, and then assisted the injured motorcyclist until it arrived. He was on his way from Ashdod to Rishon Lezion to gin up votes on Tuesday.

 

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