News Brief

Israel’s Tourism Ministry rebuked El Al for making an issue of a passenger’s conversion to Judaism. A ministry spokesman said “it viewed in a very negative light the disparaging, hurtful treatment of tourists,” the Jerusalem Post reported May 23. A passenger boarding an El Al flight last week as a guest of the ministry was asked about the conversion he underwent decades ago. “So, you converted to Judaism? Why?” the passenger was asked within earshot of other passengers standing at the El Al counter. Even mentioning a conversion is considered an offense against halacha, or Jewish religious law. El Al apologized but said the query was “in accordance with regular procedure.”

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