German Railway Takes Back Apology from First-Class Traveler Greta Thunberg

The New York Post reports, “a German railway company has taken back an apology they made to Greta Thunberg after they realized the climate activist wasn’t schlepping it on the train’s floor but instead was treated ‘friendly’ in first class.”

The German train company, Deutsche Bahn, claimed Greta Thunberg traveled in first class after the climate activist posted a picture of herself sat on the carriage floor on an overcrowded train with bags and suitcases.

The 16-year-old activist published the photo on Twitter on Saturday with the caption: “Traveling on overcrowded trains through Germany. And I’m finally on my way home!”

Deutsche Bahn, initially released a statement thanking Greta and said they “continue working hard on getting more trains, connections and seats,” and thanked Thunberg for supporting the company’s battle against climate change and pointed out that the train she used had been running 100 percent on eco-friendly electricity.

But upon reflection, Deutsche Bahn said that Thunberg’s “overcrowded” claims were just hot air.

The rail company claimed the teenager had a seat in first class between Kassel and Hamburg and that other members of her team were already sitting in first class from Frankfurt onwards.

The company later tweeted, “Dear #Greta, thank you for supporting us railroad workers in the fight against climate change! We were pleased that you were on the ICE 74 with us on Saturday. And with 100 percent green electricity.”

“It would have been even nicer if you had also reported how friendly and competent you were looked after by our team at your seat in first class,” the company added.

As a first-class passenger, Thunberg and her team would have had more legroom in plush leather seats, free food and drink, as well as complimentary WiFi and newspapers. She was returning from the COP25 climate summit in Madrid, and later claimed that jam-packed trains were actually great and having to sit on the floor wasn’t an issue.

“…this is no problem of course and I never said it was,” she tweeted. “Overcrowded trains is a great sign because it means the demand for train travel is high!”

Her recent online Twitter spat with DB came just hours after she had spoken before a furious climate protest in Turin, Italy, and said that she would ‘put leaders against the wall’ if they continued running away from their climate obligations.

She later apologized for the remark, claiming that a Swedish phrase had been lost in translation.

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About Catherine Smith

Catherine Smith is a newcomer to Washington D.C. She met and married an American journalist and moved to D.C. from the U.K. She graduated with a B.A. in Graphics, Media, and Communications and worked in design and retail in the U.K.

Photo: (Photo by Giorgio Perottino/Getty Images)

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