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Airbnb offers free housing to 20,000 Afghan refugees

Families evacuated from Kabul, Afghanistan, walk through the terminal before boarding a bus after they arrived at Washington Dulles International Airport, in Chantilly, Va., on Monday, Aug. 23, 2021. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)
Families evacuated from Kabul, Afghanistan, walk through the terminal before boarding a bus after they arrived at Washington Dulles International Airport, in Chantilly, Va., on Monday, Aug. 23, 2021. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

Online accommodation platform Airbnb offers to house 20,000 Afghan refugees for free around the world, as people flee Kabul following the Taliban takeover.

“The displacement and resettlement of Afghan refugees in the US and elsewhere is one of the biggest humanitarian crises of our time,” Airbnb chief executive Brian Chesky writes on Twitter.

“We feel a responsibility to step up,” he says.

Airbnb has made it possible for hosts to offer temporary housing to people fleeing conflict and natural disasters through its Open Homes platform since 2012.

The cost of the stays for Afghan evacuees will be funded through contributions from Airbnb and Chesky as well as donors to the Airbnb.org Refugee Fund, the company says in a statement.

“I hope this inspires other business leaders to do the same. There’s no time to waste,” Chesky says.

About 50,000 foreigners and Afghans have fled the country from Kabul’s airport since the Taliban swept to power on August 15, according to the US government.

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