An Austrian Airlines pliot left the cockpit to convince several women to change their seats after a number of Haredi men refused to sit next to them. The flight from Tel Aviv to Vienna left 40 minutes late and was delayed another half hour in Austrian airspace due to getting stuck in the rush hour. The 26 men had been scheduled to fly on the Polish national airline LOT but their flight was canceled and they were moved to Austrian Airlines.
Flight attendants reportedly tried to convince the men to take their assigned seats but those seated next to women refused. Eventually the pilot came out and convinced several women to change their seats.
The incident comes a week after the CEO of El Al announced that the airline would immediately remove any passenger who refuses to sit next to another passenger for any reason. The Israeli carrier’s decision came hours after a major Israeli tech company announced it would no longer use the airline until it rectified its gender discrimination.
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