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Air Berlin bars disabled from flight

A group of disabled passengers travelling from Moscow to Dusseldorf were denied boarding their flight by an Air Berlin pilot. The six-member group was travelling to a conference to learn about Germany's experience in creating a society accessible to disabled people. Russian MP Vladimir Krupennikov, who was also a part of the delegation, said the tickets for the flight were bought a month and a half in advance and all the necessary information regarding the wheelchairs was provided to Air Berlin, including width, weight and even colour. But the pilot decided that the group posed a risk to flight safety, and decided only two of the six passengers could fly at a time. An airport spokeswoman said the airport was ready to provide the group with special assistance. (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) MOSCOW DOMODEDOVO AIRPORT SPOKESWOMAN YELENA SELYANCHIKOVA, SAYING: "We knew in advance about this group. And our special services group gave all the assistance and all the help - starting from meeting them at the airport and all the way through to the boarding gate." But in the end, the group transferred to another Moscow airport and purchased seats for the entire delegation on an Aeroflot flight.

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