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United Airlines CEO apologizes for 'truly horrific event,' vows 'we will do better'

United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz issued a new statement Tuesday following the forced removal of a passenger who refused to give up his seat on Sunday when his plane was overbooked. "The truly horrific event that occurred on this flight has elicited many responses from all of us: outrage, anger, disappointment," Munoz wrote. "I share all of those sentiments, and one above all: my deepest apologies for what happened."

In an earlier letter to employees Monday night, Munoz initially stood behind the actions of the employees on the flight, claiming that the crew "followed established procedures" in having the man dragged off the plane. He claimed the passenger was "politely asked to deplane," but he was "disruptive and belligerent" and "defied" officers.

But in Munoz's Tuesday letter, he wrote that it is "never too late to do the right thing," adding that the company will be conducting a review of "crew movement, our policies for incentivizing volunteers in these situations, how we handle oversold situations, and an examination of how we partner with airport authorities and local law enforcement."

"I have committed to our customers and our employees that we are going to fix what's broken so this never happens again," he said, adding: "I promise you we will do better."