Israelis accuse Heathrow Border Force staff of ‘harassment’

israelis accuse heathrow border force staff of ‘harassment’

Passengers on an El Al flight from Ben Gurion to Heathrow Airport have complained of 'degrading treatment' - Steve Vidler/Alamy Stock Photo

The Home Office professional standards unit is investigating a complaint that Heathrow Border Force staff “harassed” Israeli passengers arriving in the UK.

Passengers on an El Al flight from Ben Gurion to Heathrow Airport in London on Monday were asked to undergo extra checks after a customs official discovered one of the passengers had an Israeli flag, according to UK Lawyers for Israel (UKLFI).

The passengers had entered the nothing to declare channel of the airport at 10.30pm on June 10.

It is claimed a customs official noticed an Israeli flag on one of the passenger’s luggage and the whole group was ushered into a separate room, where their luggage was scanned.

Those passengers have now complained that they felt “harassed” and were subjected to “degrading treatment” because they were either Jewish or Israeli.

UKLFI has written to the Home Office complaining that the treatment was in breach of the Equality Act.

In response, the Home Office replied that it was treating the complaint “seriously” and had ordered a review of the incident.

The Home Office wrote: “This matter has been passed to the Home Office professional standards unit and an investigating officer will now investigate the matters you raised about the incident on 10 June 2024 in accordance with the Home Office’s formal complaint procedures.”

‘We can do what we want’

One passenger told UKLFI: “We were walking towards the exit when a customs official appeared and asked a man in front of me what he had on his suitcase. The man replied that it was an Israeli flag.

“Immediately the customs official started shouting that everyone on the Israeli flight must go to the room on the left.

“One traveller said, “why us?” The official didn’t reply.  Another traveller said: “We are Jewish, why are you doing this to us?” The official said “I am a customs officer and I can do whatever I want.”

“It was a horrible feeling to be shunted into another room. There were two officers in the hallway – one man and one woman. The woman also said “we can do whatever we want”.

“In the other room there was a scanning machine. We had to take our luggage off our trolleys and another official put everyone’s cases through the machine. Then we were allowed to leave.”

The investigation follows claims survivors of the October 7 Hamas attack on Israel faced discrimination at Manchester Airport.

The Jewish Representative Council for Greater Manchester said two Israeli nationals who had attended the Nova Musical Festival had “faced aggressive questioning” by UK Border Force officials at the airport in March. The Home Office launched a review of the incident.

About 1,200 people were killed when Hamas stormed across Gaza’s border into Israel on  October 7 in coordinated attacks.

Those killed included children, the elderly and 364 young people at a music festival.

The council said two survivors “had been invited to share their experiences with the Jewish community in Manchester”.

Play The Telegraph’s brilliant range of Puzzles - and feel brighter every day. Train your brain and boost your mood with PlusWord, the Mini Crossword, the fearsome Killer Sudoku and even the classic Cryptic Crossword.

OTHER NEWS

1 hour ago

The 8 men to win Olympic Games tennis gold – ft. two-time champion Andy Murray, Rafael Nadal

1 hour ago

Commission leadership positions within the French National Assembly: no far-right MPs elected

1 hour ago

The Ryanair share price is too cheap for me to ignore

1 hour ago

Police investigating Harehills disorder make 20 arrests and identify 40 suspects

1 hour ago

Trump Wants To Be a Bull Moose

1 hour ago

US rapper Snoop Dogg to carry torch ahead of Paris opening ceremony

1 hour ago

27 Shoes So Comfortable They May Have You ~Running~ To Throw Out All Those Uncomfy Shoes In Your Closet

1 hour ago

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway cuts its stake in EV giant BYD to under 5%, dropping below Hong Kong’s disclosure threshold

1 hour ago

Labor minister tries to ‘hose down’ anti-nuclear scare campaign

1 hour ago

Natalie Portman on the true story that inspired ‘Lady in the Lake

1 hour ago

Athletes receive Olympic-themed condoms upon arrival at Paris Olympic Village

1 hour ago

The Real Reason Josh Hartnett Disappeared From Hollywood Before His Comeback

1 hour ago

Joker 2's New Trailer Teases An Unhinged Love Story With Joaquin Phoenix & Lady Gaga

1 hour ago

Bernard Arnault has been dubbed the Olympics' godfather. Here's how he built LVMH's fortune

1 hour ago

Eddie Howe gives update on Anthony Gordon’s Newcastle future amid Liverpool speculation

1 hour ago

Councils spending half their budgets on homelessness as problem hits record high, damning report finds

1 hour ago

BBC Strictly scandal – live: Tim Davie says ‘line should never be crossed’ as he gives update on show’s future

1 hour ago

US congressional task force to investigate Trump shooting

1 hour ago

B.C. legal tech firm Clio nets US$900M in historic funding round

1 hour ago

PFF grades for all 32 NFL teams' centers (including Commanders)

1 hour ago

Manchester City’s US tour: teenage stars and a chance for Jack Grealish to shine

1 hour ago

Adidas apologises for 1972 Olympics ad as Bella Hadid consults lawyers

1 hour ago

Qatar Airways unveils new version of its award-winning Qsuite business class, launching on the Boeing 777X. The verdict? The 'best just got better', with the option of window 'companion suites'

1 hour ago

Harris' campaign faces potential legal challenges. And, a new dinosaur discovery

1 hour ago

Spotify Stock Pops On Quarterly Numbers As Music Streamer Adds Premium Subscribers, Lowers Costs

1 hour ago

U.S. favored to top medal table at Paris Games. China may challenge for most gold

1 hour ago

Durant misses exhibition finale but will stay on Team USA

1 hour ago

George Conway Describes Simple Strategy That He Thinks Will Lead To Trump's Defeat

1 hour ago

Regional Australians have opened their hearts to refugees – we should open pathways to match

1 hour ago

Dacia Sandero is Europe’s best-selling car in 2024… so far

1 hour ago

"What we've learned with USA Basketball is that the gap has closed" - Steve Kerr admits the close win over South Sudan was a wake-up call

1 hour ago

A new era for visa-free travel? The EU is about to stamp it out

1 hour ago

Nintendo World Championship: NES Edition feels like Nintendo for the TikTok era

1 hour ago

"You can't set a gold standard to bronze standards" - Austin Reaves blasts Bronny James critics

1 hour ago

PGA Tour winner and announcer Mark Carnevale dies at 64 - one week after covering his final tournament

1 hour ago

Video: Instant karma for road rage driver as he punches motorist through van window - but then gets a taste of his own medicine when his victim gets out to reveal himself as being much bigger before he knocks him to the floor

1 hour ago

GTA 6 won’t be ‘wildly different’ from GTA 5 says ex-Rockstar developer

1 hour ago

Brazilian art student swaps Civil War coin at British Museum in colonial artefacts protest

1 hour ago

Porsche cuts sales outlook due to surprise alloy shortage, shares skid

1 hour ago

Windrose plans truck assembly in U.S. in rare move by Chinese EV firm

ALONGWALKER VIETNAM: Kênh khám phá trải nghiệm của giới trẻ, thế giới du lịch ALONGWALKER INDONESIA: Saluran untuk mengeksplorasi pengalaman para pemuda global