Amazon Is Latest To Pull Out of Web Summit Following Israel Comments

Amazon, Intel, Alphabet, and Meta have all said they no longer plan to attend the tech conference.

Bloomberg News

October 23, 2023

1 Min Read
Amazon Joins Web Summit Defection Following Israel Comments
Image: Bloomberg

(Bloomberg) -- Inc. joined companies and investors bowing out of the upcoming Web Summit technology conference in Europe after the event's leader made controversial comments about Israel.

A representative for Amazon Web Services confirmed Friday that the company wouldn’t be participating in the conference, scheduled for November in Lisbon. AWS, Amazon’s cloud-computing division, was previously listed as a partner of the conference and one of its vice presidents, Vishal Sharma, was scheduled to speak.

A growing contingent of companies have backed out of Web Summit, joining a raft of venture capitalists from Israel, the US, and Europe in snubbing the event. Intel Corp., Siemens AG, Google parent Alphabet Inc. and Facebook owner Meta Platforms Inc. have all said they no longer plan to go.

The cancellations came after Paddy Cosgrave, the head of Web Summit, criticized Western support for Israel on social media. "War crimes are war crimes even when committed by allies," he said about Israel’s response to the Hamas attacks.

Cosgrave later issued an apology, writing on Web Summit's website, "I understand that what I said, the timing of what I said, and the way it has been presented has caused profound hurt to many."

A group of Israeli investors issued a joint statement calling for a boycott of the event.

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