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New iPhone update suggests Palestinian flag emoji when you type in ‘Jerusalem’: What Apple said on ‘bug’


The emoji provoked claims that Apple was biased against Israel in light of the continuing fighting in Gaza, which has resulted in the deaths of 33,207 Palestinians.

Apple announced that it will no longer propose the Palestinian flag emoji to certain iPhone users when they text “Jerusalem” in their messages. Apple blamed a software glitch for the prompt, telling news agency AFP that the iPhone keyboard’s predictive emoji suggestion was an accident and would be rectified in the upcoming update. Amidst the ongoing crisis in Gaza, where 33,207 Palestinians have been murdered in six months and the majority of the 2.3 million people living in the territory are homeless and at risk of starvation, the emoji provoked charges that Apple was biased against Israel.

The conflict began on October 7 when 1,200 people were killed in a cross-border raid by Hamas in southern Israel. More than 600 Israeli troops have reportedly died in action since then, according to the Israeli army.

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British television presenter Rachel Riley brought attention to the Palestinian emoji option on social media when she posted, “When I type the capital of Israel, Jerusalem, I’m offered the Palestinian flag emoji,” on X (previously Twitter).

“Showing double standards with respect to Israel is a form of antisemitism, which is itself a form of racism against Jewish people,” she said, pointing out that no flag emojis were recommended when other capital cities were typed into iPhone texts.

She signed her post as “a Jewish woman concerned about the global rise in antisemitism,” yet she claimed that following a recent upgrade to the iPhone operating system, the Palestinian flag emoji started to appear in relation to Jerusalem.

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