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Google Maps removes ‘apartheid wall’ label from security barrier near Jerusalem

A screenshot of Google Maps
A screenshot of Google Maps displayed the “Apartheid Wall” near Jerusalem. 

Google has announced that it has removed the label “Apartheid Wall” from a road adjacent to the security barrier on the outskirts of eastern Jerusalem.

While it is unclear how it came about, the company called it “inappropriate” and removed the label after being alerted by JNS.

“We have taken swift action to update this inappropriate error,” a Google spokesperson told JNS.

The unnamed road appears to be a military route that runs alongside the security barrier not far from the Bethphage church on the eastern slopes of the Mount of Olives and the Tomb of Lazarus east of Jerusalem.

Erected after the wave of Palestinian suicide bombings during the years of the Second Intifada from 2000 to 2005, the security barrier has been seen as an effective tool in order to prevent infiltrations from the West Bank by terror groups, with the number of such bombings dropping dramatically following its construction.

Still, it has drawn criticism from the international community, which sees the barrier as evidence of Israel’s intent to annex land and undermine the Mideast peace process.

As a result, critics have accused Israel of being an “apartheid state” to describe its policies towards Palestinians in the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem, also applying the term to the barrier.

Jewish groups, including the Anti-Defamation League, say that the “apartheid label would seem to question the legitimacy of the world’s only Jewish state and its continued existence.” JN

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