- The Washington Times - Monday, October 2, 2006

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

Two homosexuals traveling from Paris to New York got a rude awakening last month when their flight crew scolded them for kissing and touching, the New Yorker magazine reported.

According to an article in the magazine’s Sept. 25 edition and posted on its Web site, television journalist George Tsikhiseli and his writer boyfriend Stephan Varnier were told by a flight attendant not long into their American Airlines flight to “stop the touching and the kissing.”

When the couple took up the issue with the purser on board and then the captain, they were ordered to drop their complaints or the flight would be diverted.

Mr. Tsikhiseli was quoted by the New Yorker as saying there was no inappropriate behavior between himself and Mr. Varnier apart from one resting his head on the other’s shoulder or a peck on the cheek.

A spokesman for American Airlines told the New Yorker that the crew’s injunction was reasonable and had nothing to do with homosexuality.”Our passengers need to recognize that they are in an environment with all ages, backgrounds, creeds and races,” he told the magazine. “Our understanding is that the level of affection was more than a quick peck on the cheek.”

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