The Associated PressDec 16, 2019 08:45:21 IST
Climate activist Greta Thunberg and Germany’s national railway company created a tweetstorm Sunday after she posted a photo of herself sitting on the floor of a train surrounded by lots of bags.
The image has drawn plenty of comment online about the performance of German railways.
Thunberg posted the tweet late Saturday with the comment “travelling on overcrowded trains through Germany. And I’m finally on my way home!”
Traveling on overcrowded trains through Germany. And I’m finally on my way home! pic.twitter.com/ssfLCPsR8o
— Greta Thunberg (@GretaThunberg) December 14, 2019
But German railway company Deutsche Bahn suggested that Thunberg may not have spent the whole time sitting on the floor. And the 16-year-old Swedish activist later sought to draw a line under the matter by tweeting that she eventually got a seat and that overcrowded trains are a good thing.
Some Twitter users expressed pity for Thunberg for not being able to get a proper seat on the train for the long ride home from Madrid, where she was attending the U.N. climate change conference. Others wished her a safe trip home after months of travelling by trains and boats to different climate events in Europe and the United States.
Safe travels! Thank you so much for your work in 2019! See you in 2020! pic.twitter.com/66xBBFQkaP
— Moms Clean Air Force #ClimateAction (@CleanAirMoms) December 14, 2019
Thunberg doesn’t fly on planes because it’s considered harmful to the climate. Last week, she was named Time magazine’s Person of the Year for her efforts to prod government and others to take faster actions in fighting climate change.
Deutsche Bahn, which used to be famous for its punctuality, has come under fire in recent years for delays, last-minute train cancellations and expensive ticket fares.
In Deutsche Bahn’s first reply to the teenager’s initial tweet, the company wished her a good trip back home and adding that “we continue working hard on getting more trains, connections and seats.”
Noch schöner wäre es gewesen, wenn Du zusätzlich auch berichtet hättest, wie freundlich und kompetent Du von unserem Team an Deinem Sitzplatz in der Ersten Klasse betreut worden bist. #Greta 2/2
— Deutsche Bahn AG (@DB_Presse) December 15, 2019
Later, however, the railway company wrote in a statement to the media that Thunberg 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.
In the photo on Twitter, Thunberg is sitting on the floor at the end of a rail car with her back leaning against a suitcase, staring out of a window. There’s an empty food box next to her and more suitcases and backpacks piled up by her side.
Later on Sunday, Deutsche Bahn tweeted twice more in regard to Thunberg’s train travels through Germany.
In the first tweet, the company thanks the teenager for supporting Deutsche Bahn’s battle against climate change and pointed out that the train she used had been running 100 percent on eco-friendly electricity.
Greta Thunberg misleads public in tweet and photo about an "overcrowded" German train showing she was seated on the floor. Deutsche Bahn has responded, saying she and her team had first class seating. https://t.co/xwdllW0y1P
— Andy Ngo (@MrAndyNgo) December 16, 2019
Germany has named a sausage in honor of Greta. It's called BRATWURST!
— Sedais (@sedais516) December 15, 2019
— Raheem Kassam (@RaheemKassam) December 15, 2019
I always find a seat. pic.twitter.com/LZAtgcPwOx
— Andreas Moser (@AndreasMoser007) December 15, 2019
That's not an overcrowded train.
THIS is an overcrowded train.
It's all down to your own perception of life ironically force fed by your advisors but not always true.
You're nothing more than a marketing prop. Which is sad because you've had your childhood stolen. pic.twitter.com/ojjRc5xpvT
— Mark. (@J0ePublic) December 15, 2019