ADL Praises Norwegian Cruise Line for Cancelling Port Calls to Tunisia After Israeli Passport Holders Were Barred

New York, NY, March 11, 2014 …The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today praised Norwegian Cruise Line for its “courageous and responsible” decision to cancel all port calls to Tunisia following the Tunisian government’s refusal to allow Israeli passport holders to disembark from the Norwegian Jade cruise ship.

 “We applaud the courageous and responsible decision of Norwegian Cruise Line in standing up to the discriminatory policy of the Tunisian government,” said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. “They have sent a clear message to Tunisia and other governments that discriminatory practices against Israelis and other nationals will have a negative impact on tourism.”

ADL wrote yesterday to Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line’s CEO, expressing concern over complaints from passengers aboard the Norwegian Jade. Israeli nationals onboard the 21-day Mediterranean cruise were informed they would be barred from disembarking just before the ship’s scheduled stop in Tunis on March 9. According to a Norwegian Cruise Line statement issued earlier today, the company was not informed of the new Tunisian policy in advance. The statement made clear that Norwegian Cruise Line “…will not tolerate such random acts of discrimination against our guests,” and indicated the company “has cancelled all remaining calls to Tunisia and will not return.”

In its letter, ADL expressed concern that passengers on the 21-day cruise of the eastern and western Mediterranean were denied entry in Tunis.   The League called on Norwegian to make clear to the Tunisian Government that the cruise line would eliminate the port from the itineraries of the Mediterranean cruises if Israeli-passport-holding passengers would be barred from disembarking.

The Anti-Defamation League was founded in 1913 to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all. Today it is the world’s leading organization combating anti-Semitism, exposing hate groups, training law enforcement on hate crimes, developing anti-bias education programs for students, countering cyber-hate and relentlessly pursuing equal rights for all.