Ryanair apologizes for flight attendant’s “occupied Palestine” announcement

A Ryanair airliner arrives in Eilat, Nov. 9, 2015. Credit: Flash90.

(JNS) — Irish low-cost airline Ryanair is feeling the heat after a flight attendant on a plane from Bologna, Italy, to Ben-Gurion Airport in Israel caused an uproar by announcing the aircraft was readying for “landing in Palestine.”

During last week’s flight, a stewardess repeatedly announced over the P.A. system that the final destination of the route was “occupied Palestine.”

Passengers were incensed by the attendant’s unwillingness to correct herself and were threatened with arrest after attempting to photograph her.

Ryanair subsequently apologized for the ordeal, describing it as an “innocent mistake.”

“A junior crew member on this flight from Bologna to Tel Aviv (10 June) made a routine descent [announcement] mistakenly saying ‘Palestine’ instead of ‘Tel Aviv.’ This was an innocent mistake with no intent and was immediately corrected and apologized for by the senior crew member on board,” the airline said in a statement to the London-based Jewish Chronicle.

In a subsequent letter to the Simon Wiesenthal Center, Ryanair’s CEO said he was “100% satisfied that this was an innocent mistake with no political overtones or intent.”