'Boycott Ryanair': Airline Criticised For Its Handling Of Appalling Racist Incident

Photo: Getty Images.
Calls for passengers to boycott Ryanair are being shared online after the airline failed to remove a racially abusive passenger from a flight.
A video of the appalling incident, in which an irate white man calls an elderly black woman an "ugly black bastard", was shared on Facebook by fellow passenger David Lawrence on Friday. It has now been viewed more than 3 million times.
In the video which appears below, the 77-year-old woman is heard responding to the man in her Jamaican accent, which leads to him spewing yet more racist abuse.
"Don’t talk to me in a fucking foreign language, you stupid, ugly cow," the man is heard saying.
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The woman's daughter, who accompanied her on the flight from Barcelona to London Stansted on Friday, has told press they were returning from a short break to mark the anniversary of her mother's husband's death.
"This is black history month! My mother has worked her all of her life, paid her taxes and her dues. Why should she have to go through all of this?" the woman's daughter told Huffington Post.
It is understood that the man became abusive after the elderly woman, who has arthritris, was unable to stand up instantly to allow him to get to his seat. To diffuse the situation, the elderly woman – and not the man who racially abused her – ended up moving seats.
"I don’t know how to go forward or where to take this," the woman's daughter told Huffington Post. "I’m not even sure what I want done to resolve the situation, beyond an open apology to my mother for the way that the things were handled."
A Ryanair representative told the BBC: "We operate strict guidelines for disruptive passengers and we will not tolerate unruly behaviour like this. We will be taking this matter further and disruptive or abusive behaviour like this will result in passengers being banned from travel."
Meanwhile, Essex Police have told the media today: "This incident, which we were made aware of this morning, is believed to have taken place on a plane at Barcelona Airport. Essex Police takes prejudice-based crime seriously and we want all incidents to be reported. We are working closely with Ryanair and the Spanish authorities on the investigation."
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On Twitter, many people are calling for passengers to boycott the airline over its mishandling of the incident. A selection of their tweets appear below.
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