Kuwait Airways under scrutiny after refusal to fly Israeli from London Heathrow

Kuwait is one of many countries that either do not recognize Israel or do not allow Israelis to visit there. The countries include Iran, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon, among others.

FILE PHOTO: UK Border control is seen in Terminal 2 at Heathrow Airport in London (photo credit: REUTERS)
FILE PHOTO: UK Border control is seen in Terminal 2 at Heathrow Airport in London
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The Lawfare Project has filed a new complaint again Kuwait Airways for continued discrimination after Orna Schneider, an Israeli woman, was barred from traveling from London Heathrow to Bangkok after she presented her Israeli passport to airline staff.
Kuwait is one of many countries that either do not recognize Israeli passports, passports with Israeli visas or do not allow Israelis to visit there.  The countries include Iran, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon, among others.
Though Kuwait Airways, which is the national airline carrier of the Gulf state, is outside of the their country's jurisdiction at London Heathrow traveling to Bangkok, the airline extended their authority and carried out the government's wishes by turning Schneider away from her flight.
"At this point, it is clear that Kuwait Airways’ hate for Israelis supersedes their desire to stay in business. If they simply end their illegal boycott of Israeli passengers, they’d be free to fly their planes wherever they want. [This will continue] as long as Kuwait enforces this discriminatory policy, in clear violation of national and international anti-discrimination laws," said Executive Director of the Lawfare Project Brooke Goldstein.
The Lawfare Project has been working since 2017 to hold Kuwait Airways accountable for breaching United States and international anti-discrimination laws. Due to this action, Kuwait Airways no longer runs inter-European flights or routes to JFK, according to the Lawfare Project.
“This is about an institutional policy of discrimination against a protected group under the provisions of the Equality Act 2010. If a carrier refused to carry any other minority group in the UK they would be closed down without hesitation. It is wholly unacceptable that the prejudices and discriminatory practices from a foreign country should be imported into the UK," said Robert Festenstein, Principal at RHF Solicitors and legal counsel on the case.
"All people living and working in the UK should be able to purchase all services being made available to the general population" he said, adding that, "for Heathrow Airport to allow this to happen in their terminal is something which should be the subject of an immediate investigation."