German airline, Lufthansa, has been embroiled in a scandal since May 4 when the airline reportedly singled out Jewish people and prevented them from boarding a flight from Frankfurt to Budapest. Realising that their actions were interpreted as anti-semitic, Lufthansa has now released a series of apologies.
According to Lufthansa, the blocking of Jewish passengers occurred “because the travelers refused to wear a medical mask on board” and “by law, Lufthansa is obliged to follow the legal requirements.”
However, members of the public explained that this is not what happened. Instead of applying the COVID-19 rules to only people who reportedly didn’t wear a mask, the airline reportedly assumed somehow that all of the Jewish people were travelling together and therefore banned a large number of Jewish people from boarding a connecting flight.
Lufthansa, trying to recover from backlash, said:
While Lufthansa is still reviewing the facts and circumstances of that day, we regret that the large group was denied boarding rather than limiting it to the non-compliant guests.
We apologize to all the passengers unable to travel on this flight, not only for the inconvenience, but also for the offense caused and personal impact.
Lufthansa and its employees stand behind the goal of connecting people and cultures worldwide. Diversity and equal opportunity are core values for our company and our corporate culture. What transpired is not consistent with Lufthansa’s policies or values. We have zero tolerance for racism, anti-Semitism and discrimination of any type.
The press statement did not help Lufthansa a great deal though. This is because an airport representative was reportedly caught on the below video saying that “Jewish people were the mess.. Jewish people made the problems… everybody has to pay for a couple.”
Lufthansa has now promised to engage the affected passengers to better understand their concerns and openly discuss how Lufthansa may improve their customer service.