Thai Airways Case

The petitioners are Nicolai Hermansen, Signe Edrich and Jonna Vilstrup, all Danish citizens, born in Denmark.

The Danish Broadcasting Network DR aired the program “Kontant” on 3 January 2006. With a hidden camera, a journalist pretended he wanted to buy a flight ticket from Thai Travel in Copenhagen. He found that it was possible to receive a discount of 1000 DK if he was ethnic Thai. According to the petitioners, people who are being discriminated against through the practice of discrimination testing, are nonetheless victims and therefore have legal standing. The police rejected the case with the reasoning of lack of evidence even though a video was submitted. The local prosecutor then based his decision on the lack of standing of the petitioners and their Counsel.

The petitioners claim a violation by the State Party of their right to an effective remedy as they were denied a discount on the basis of their nationality or ethnic origin and were then not given access to an adequate remedy. The Committee observes that the “ethnic discount” scheme no longer exists as it has been cancelled by Thai Airways following the decision by the Complaint Committee for Ethnic Equal Treatment on 19 September 2006. The Committee therefore considers that the petitioners can neither qualify as victims since they have not actually been disadvantaged by the incriminated facts nor can they qualify as potential victims since the incriminated facts can no longer produce any effects, and therefore decides that the communication is inadmissible.

17. December 2019

CERD 44/2009
  • Decision: 25. August 2010
  • Comm: Race