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Will.i.am's racist accusations were a 'misunderstanding,' says airline

Will.i.am's accusations of racism against a Qantas flight attendant were caused by a "misunderstanding," according to the airline.

American rapper Will.i.am. Picture: @iamwill/instagram.com

LONDON - According to Qantas, Will.i.am's accusations of racism against a flight attendant were caused by a "misunderstanding".

The 44-year-old star recently accused a fly attendant of behaving in a "racist" manner towards him during a flight from Brisbane to Sydney, saying he was singled out when he missed an announcement to put his laptop away.

In response to the accusation, a Qantas spokesperson said: "There was a misunderstanding on board, which seems to have been exacerbated by Will.i.am wearing noise-cancelling headphones and not being able to hear instructions from crew.

"We'll be following up with Will.i.am and wish him well for the rest of the tour."

Prior to that, the rapper detailed his accusations on social media.

He took to Twitter to claim that he and his group were the subjects of racist abuse from an "aggressive flight attendant".

He wrote: "I'm currently on a flight from Brisbane to Sydney. I'm sorry to say me and my group have experienced their worse service due to an overly aggressive flight attendant... I don't want to believe she racist. But she has clearly aimed all her frustrations only at the people of colour (sic)."

He added: "@Qantas I was making music wearing noise-cancelling headphones on the plane... I'm sorry I couldn't hear the P.A...I complied when she's tapped me on the shoulder to put my laptop away... It's sad that your #RacistFlightAttendant sent the police...

"@Qantas Your #RacistFlightattendant was beyond rude & took it to the next level by calling the police on me. thank god the other passengers testified that SHE was out of Control the police finally let me go. Imagine if the police were as aggressive.

"I was intimidated by five police officers when I landed... for what? I put away my laptop when she asked.. .why would she feel threatened by me to call the police? What did I do wrong? I wasn't out of hand.. I was polite & did what she asked... now you're asking me to take the abuse?

"No one said she was a white supremest... I said she singled every person of colourbin the flight and gave them a hard time...and went to the extreme of calling the police on me when I did nothing wrong...other passengers on the flight agreed that she was out of hand...

"I'm sorry? Is callin the police on a passenger for not hearing he P.A due to wearing noise cancelling headphones appropriate? If didn't put away my laptop 'in a rapid 2min time' I'd understand. I did comply quickly & politely, only to be greeted by police. I think I was targeted.

"I am posting so that this doesn't happen again...it shouldn't happen to an Aboriginal, Latino, African, LGBTQ White, Red or anyone... everyone deserves to be treated with respect... (sic)."

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