Ashton Kutcher Reasons With Protester Who Interrupts Panel Discussion, Demanding Airbnb Leave Palestine

Ashton Kutcher was speaking on a panel today at the Airbnb Open 2016: A Festival of Hosting event when his presentation was interrupted by protester Ariel Gold, who barged onstage to protest Airbnb’s presence in Palestine.

Gold, reports People, is a member of CODEPINK, which the group’s website describes as “a women-led grassroots organization supporting peace and human rights initiatives.”

Gold, according to social media coverage, was holding a sign reading, “Airbnb Out of Settlements,” and Kutcher joined Airbnb founder Brian Chesky to address her concerns and defend the company, in which Kutcher has invested.

“[A world] doesn’t discriminate against one another,” said Kutcher, according to reports. “We can get to know each other intimately and understand our collective narrative is a narrative for everyone, and that we all can belong in a world together without borders.”

He added: “I can appreciate that this doesn’t happen seamlessly. I can appreciate that this doesn’t happen easily. I can appreciate that where there is change, there will be a fringe case that feels objectified, but this company is about bringing people together, and about loving one another.”

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Kutcher also defended Chesky and Airbnb. “And I know this man,” he said. “I know his heart, I know his initiative, and I know that when a problem gets brought to his desk, that says that there is a discrimination or this is a displacement, that he cares. And that the first thing that he does is try to look at the system holistically and change it to make it better.”

Kutcher wrapped up by telling Gold: “You’re welcome to a world where we all belong. And if you want to sit down and have a conversation about it, I’m happy to have that conversation with you.”

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