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30th January 2019, 15:36:48 UTC

“I did the Counter Terrorism Weapons Training Course. It was the highlight of my time in Israel!” – TripAdvisor review of a shooting activity, situated in an illegal Israeli settlement.

“Learn to shoot like a soldier, ride a camel or take a tour of historic sites –all on stolen land!”

Thanks to help from TripAdvisor, these are all activities you can do when visiting one of the many illegal Israeli settlements. TripAdvisor lists more than 70 different properties, activities and attractions in illegal Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT). By doing so, TripAdvisor is boosting the settlement economy and contributing to settlement expansion.

The company’s promotion of settlements as a tourist destination helps to “normalise” and legitimise them to the public. Settlements are illegal under international law -their creation amounts to a war crime. Settlements are on stolen Palestinian land. They should not be tourist destinations. Since 1967, when Israel captured and occupied the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, the Israeli government has promoted the creation and expansion of settlements.

Settlements have a devastating impact on a wide range of human rights of the Palestinian people, including their rights to an adequate standard of living, to housing, to health, to freedom of movement and to education. The existence of settlements also cripples the Palestinian economy. In driving tourism to the settlements, TripAdvisor is contributing to these human rights violations.Ask Stephen Kaufer, CEO of TripAdvisor Inc. to stop listing or promoting properties, activities and attractions located in illegal Israeli settlements or run by settlers in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

TripAdvisor is the main focus of this campaign because of the company’s relative importance to the tourism industry in Israeli settlements: TripAdvisor is the most visited online tourism website by foreign visitors to Israel; and it promotes more listings (at least 70) in more settlements (27) than any other digital tourism company -with the exception of Airbnb, which pledged in November 2018 to remove most of its listings in settlements.

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