A group of 18 American Orthodox Jewish girls were recently banned from a Delta flight from Amsterdam to New York.
The teens had previously been reprimanded during a connection with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines – which is partly owned by Delta – for eating outside of designated meal times, leading to a back and forth regarding safety protocols COVID-19.
Business Insider Reports how the girls were part of a larger group that had visited religious sites in the Ukrainian city of Kiev. On their KLM flight to Amsterdam, the girls had started eating religion-approved kosher food given to them by their rabbi that was not available on the plane, prompting the one of the flight attendants accused them of eating outside of “meal times”.
1010 WCSI News continues to report how witnesses described the girls as “very nice and calm”, although flight attendants repeatedly berated them for allegedly breaking safety protocols. Their rabbi, Yisroel Kahan, later explained how KLM even attempted to charge the girls 2,000 euros (around $ 3,000) to “fix the problem,” plus extra charges for baggage.
In a Twitter thread Retweeted by Rabbi Kahan, the incident was further exacerbated when a mother asked one of the daughters to change seats in order to sit next to her son on their next Delta flight. The girl and mother claim they “came back right away” after being told by a flight attendant who was against the plane’s protocol, and the group were quickly kicked off the plane along with the 18. prevented from going up.
Kahan and an anonymous passenger further described a KLM security guard who “made fun” of the girls.
The Daily Mail says that the girls were forced to spend the night in a “cordoned off area of the airport”. They finally returned to the United States on Sunday afternoon.