The opinion of the court was delivered by: Haight, District Judge:
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
This suit is an action by plaintiff to recover damages in the
amount of $2,000 allegedly resulting from an incident occurring
in relation to airline transportation furnished by defendant.
This action is before the court on defendant's motion to
dismiss for failure to state a claim pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P.
The parties are substantially in agreement on the material
facts surrounding this case. Plaintiff, Rafael Sassouni, who
brings this action pro se, purchased an airline ticket from
defendant Olympic Airways ("Olympic"). The ticket provided for
travel from New York to Athens, Greece on April 8, 1987; from
Athens, to Tel Aviv, Israel on April 12, 1987 (the eve of
Passover); and from Tel Aviv to New York on April 24, 1987. As
plaintiff completed his April 8 and April 24 flights without
mishap, the only leg of the journey at issue here is the April
12 flight from Athens to Tel Aviv.
It is undisputed that after plaintiff arrived at the Athens
airport on April 12, 1987 he was denied boarding "due to
alleged overbooking of (his) flight." Defendant's Memorandum in
Support of Motion to Dismiss, 3. Plaintiff took the next
available Olympic flight to Tel Aviv which arrived the
following day, April 13 (Passover) after sundown. As an
Orthodox Jew, plaintiff was forbidden by Jewish law to travel
on Passover. Plaintiff's Pre-Trial Statement of Facts
("Pre-Trial Statement"), ¶ 4. Due to this delay in travel,
plaintiff alleges he suffered "great mental and emotional
distress." Pre-Trial Statement, ¶ 1(d).
Plaintiff commenced the present action in the Civil Court of
the City of New York, Small Claims Part on October 15, 1990.
Defendant removed the case from Small Claims Part to this court
on November 21, 1990 pursuant to the Foreign Sovereign
Immunities Act, 28 U.S.C. § 1441(d) which provides in part:
"(d) Any civil action brought in a State court
against a foreign state as defined in section
1603(a) of this title may be removed by the
foreign state to the district court of the United
States for the district and division embracing the
place where such action is pending."
Defendant now moves this Court to dismiss plaintiff's claim
as time barred.
Applicability of the Warsaw Convention
International transportation for purposes of the Warsaw
"any transportation in which, according to the
contract made by the parties, the place of
departure and the place of destination, whether or
not there be a break in the transportation or a
transshipment, are situated either within the
territories of two High Contracting Parties, or
within the territory of a single High Contracting
Party, if there is an agreed stopping place within
a territory subject to the sovereignty,
suzerainty, mandate or authority of another power,
even though that power is not a party to this
convention. . . ." Article 1(2).
Plaintiff's transportation was unquestionably "international"
within the meaning of the Warsaw Convention, given that the
place of origin and the place of destination are in the United
States (New York), which is a High Contracting Party to the
Warsaw Convention, and Athens, Greece and Tel Aviv, Israel
comprised agreed stopping places within the territory of
another power. See generally Rabinowitz v. Scandinavian
Airlines, 741 F. Supp. 441, 443 (S.D.N.Y. 1990) (travel which
commenced and terminated in New York ...