American actor and investor Ashton Kutcher confronted an anti-Israel protester on Saturday after she stormed the stage to protest against Airbnb for allowing individuals in West Bank settlements to advertise their homes using the service.
Ashton Kutcher was hosting the Airbnb Open 2016 – A Festival of Hosting on Saturday in Los Angeles and was on stage with Airbnb founder Brian Chesky.
The woman, identified as Ariel Gold, was representing CODEPINK, an organization that identifies itself as “a women-initiated grassroots peace and social justice movement.” One of the group’s main protest subjects are Israeli settlements in the West Bank.
Dressed in a pink getup Gold stormed the stage, as many in the crowd booed, and she held a poster bearing the slogan “Airbnb Out of Settlements” and featuring the group’s Twitter handle.
Footage of the incident captured by one attendee showed Kutcher greeting the protestor, shaking her hand and asking her how she is. “Let me explain to you something about what Airbnb means to me,” stated Kutcher.
“Let me first tell you what Airbnb is doing to Palestinians,”shouted back Gold
“Well you actually don’t have the stage,” Kutcher responded.
The woman continued to shout hatred against Israel before Kutcher interrupted her by speaking to the crowd, saying, “What the people here are doing, is focusing on bringing people together!”
The crowd erupted in applause and cheers for Kutcher as he continued to defend Airbnb and the companies founder. “This company is about bringing people together and loving one another.”
Airbnb has come under attack from the BDS Movement in recent years because it allows Israelis living in West Bank settlements to advertise their homes on Airbnb. Code Pink and other anti-Israel movements see this as Airbnb helping to “fund the occupation”.
Ashton Kutcher has visited Israel previously in 2013 where he said that Israel was close to his heart and that “coming to Israel is sort of coming back to the source of creation.”