Qantas stands by its crew over Will.i.am's racist claim

19 Novembre, 2019, 11:56 | Auteur: Auguste Feret

Australian airline Qantas on Monday rejected accusations of in-flight racism from U.S. performer will.i.am, with the airline saying it would back legal action against the Black Eyed Peas frontman. He said he "quickly and politely" put his laptop away when asked, but the flight attendant - whose name he included - escalated the situation by calling the police.

Qantas, which called the incident a "misunderstanding", has requested the rapper to retract his statement.

Qantas aircraft are seen on the tarmac at Melbourne International Airport in Melbourne.

Will.i.am said the reason the police were called is because he "couldn't hear the PA while making beats on the plane wearing noise canceling headphones".

Qantas stressed that the incident doesn't have anything to do with race and that they will follow up with the singer and wish him well for the rest of his tour.

He wrote: "I'm now on a flight from Brisbane to Sydney".

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On Monday, will.i.am tweeted that he is "in the public eye & I behave even when I have a bad day" and that "everyone should operate with respect. especially people who serve the public", when fellow fans took him to task for venting on social media.

He did, however, get criticized by some who felt it was inappropriate for him to publicly name the flight attendant on his Twitter account, which has 12.8 million followers.

In subsequent tweets, the rapper used the hashtag racistflightattendant, named the woman and shared an image of her and an Australian Federal Police officer.

"I don't want to believe she racist. But she has clearly aimed all her frustrations only at the people of colour", he tweeted.

"Absent a retraction, and if the crew member wanted to take the matter further, we'd certainly be willing to provide legal support for them to do this", a spokesman told Reuters in a statement. "People who serve the paying public need to know that passengers have on devices that block out outside sound...sending the POLICE after them is a bit much".

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