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Surreal footage shows moment man asked terrorist plane hijacker for selfie

Joe Harker

| Last updated 

Incredibly surreal footage has been released of the moment a plane passenger got up and asked for a selfie with his hijacker.

Back in 2016, Egyptair flight MS181 was flying from Alexandria to Cairo when it was hijacked by a man wearing what appeared to be a suicide belt.

The flight was diverted to Larnaca airport, Cyprus, where all but four of the plane's 56 passengers were allowed to disembark.

Four passengers and the flight crew remained on board the plane with their hijacker, who would be named by officials as Seif Eldin Mustafa.


One of those passengers still held hostage was British national Ben Innes, who decided the best course of action was to go up to his hijacker and ask if he could get a selfie with the guy.

Now some footage from inside the plane has shown the moment that Ben went up to his hijacker and got the selfie he wanted.

In the video the hijacker can be seen sitting with members of the flight crew before another heads over to talk to the man, who looks down the passenger compartment.


After a brief chat, they beckon Ben over and the hijacker stands up to pose for the photo together, with the flight crew agreeing to hold the camera.

Technically that makes the picture no longer a selfie, but Ben seemed satisfied with the end result and headed back to his seat, with the hijacker also sitting back down.

If the bomb vest was real then him going up and asking for a picture wasn't going to have much of an impact on his fate, while Ben reckoned he might be able to tell if it was a fake if he got up close while posing for a picture.

Nobody on board the Egyptair flight was harmed, with all hostages eventually let go. Credit: Alamy Stock Photo/ Touch The Skies
Nobody on board the Egyptair flight was harmed, with all hostages eventually let go. Credit: Alamy Stock Photo/ Touch The Skies

He was able to get the plane's crew to translate the request for him and Mustafa 'just shrugged OK' to agree to being in the picture.

Ben also thought it would be helpful for the hijacker to understand that he 'wasn't just a nameless, faceless victim', which is actually really good advice if you ever find yourself in a hostage situation.

After five hours the hijacker surrendered to the authorities, with the incident deemed not to be an act of terrorism.


As for why Mustafa hijacked the plane, he apparently did so because his ex-wife lived in Cyprus and he wanted to see her.

The belt of explosives he was wearing turned out to be a fake, Mustafa was later extradited back to Egypt where he was sentenced to life imprisonment.

Topics: World News, UK News, News, Social Media

Joe Harker
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