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Oprah gets apology after racist encounter

2013-08-09 14:58
oprah winfrey,harvard
Geneva - Talk show host Oprah Winfrey says she encountered racism while shopping in Switzerland - and the national tourism office agrees.

The media mogul, who is one of the world's richest women, told the U.S. program Entertainment Tonight that a shop assistant in Zurich refused to show her a handbag because it was "too expensive" for her.

Forbes magazine estimates that Winfrey earned $77 million in the year ending in June.

Winfrey said she left the shop calmly without arguing, but that the experience was proof that racism continues to be a problem.

"There's two different ways to handle it," she said.

"I could've had the whole blow-up thing... but it still exists, of course it does."

Shop owner Trudy Gotz told the BBC that an assistant had shown Winfrey several other items before the "misunderstanding" over a $35,000 (£22,500) bag, which was kept behind a screen.

A spokeswoman for the Swiss tourism office, Daniela Baer, told The Associated Press on Friday "we are very sorry for what happened to her".

The tourism office also posted an apology on Twitter, saying "this person acted terribly wrong".

Winfrey was in town to attend last month's wedding of longtime pal Tina Turner, who lives in Switzerland.
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