Letter Sent to German Consul General in NYC Seeking Clarification and Investigation Into Detained Hasidim at Frankfurt Airport

The following letter was sent earlier today to the German Consul General in New York, David Gill’s office.

To whom this may concern,

I’m reaching out on behalf of several American citizens, Hasidic Jews who, while traveling to Austria via Frankfurt last week were stopped at FRA for no good reason, rounded up with many other Hasidic Jewish travelers until a total of 16 men were held in detention in unfitting conditions for over ten hours.

We are seeking answers from the German government:

  • Why were these men held to begin with?
  • Why were they held for over ten hours? What was being checked out that it took that long?
  • Why were they mistreated, not given food or adequate provisions, interrogated like criminals, and held in cells with prison-like toilets?
  • Why were their passports and phones confiscated?
  • On what basis did the German authorities who responded to the American Embassy’s inquest at the time claim they were holding the men for potentially fraudulent documentation?

Without answers to these questions we can only jump to conclusions, but the German government deserves a chance to clear this all up and make it right by the people harmed. Thus, we are calling for an immediate investigation into this incident and for those responsible to be held accountable.

My hope is that this matter can be resolved by, at the very least, a simple acknowledgement of this incident and a commitment to getting to the bottom of what happened so as to ensure it will not be repeated.

Dov Hikind
Founder, Americans Against Antisemitism
Former New York State Assemblyman for 36 years