March 10, 2014
Mr. Kevin Sheehan
Chief Executive Officer
Norwegian Cruise Line
Dear Mr. Sheehan,
We are writing regarding complaints we have received from passengers currently on board the NCL Norwegian Jade who report Israeli-passport holders were barred from disembarking from the ship at the scheduled port stop at Tunis, Tunisia on March 9.
Passengers on the 21-Day cruise of the eastern and western Mediterranean had not been told in advance that certain passport holders would be denied entry at any of the 17 ports visited by the ship. Indeed, according to the passengers, Israeli-passport holding passengers were informed of this development just hours before passengers disembarked in Tunis.
We urge NCL to take immediate steps to prevent such a situation in the future. At a minimum, going forward, should certain passport holders be barred from disembarking at designated ports, that information must be provided publicly to all interested passengers. Such information would enable affected passengers to choose cruises with other itineraries.
We further respectfully urge NCL and other cruise lines which stop at Tunis to make clear to the Tunisian Government that should Israeli-passport-holding passengers be barred from disembarking in Tunisia, the cruise lines will eliminate the port from the itineraries of Mediterranean cruises.
We look forward to hearing from you on this troubling issue.
Abraham H. Foxman