“I can’t breathe honestly,” the passenger can be heard saying as a man restrains him.
The video was filmed and uploaded to Facebook on Saturday by Ahtzaz Ali, who told RT the confrontation took place on a Turkish airlines flight set to take off from London’s Heathrow airport for Istanbul.
“Why is he slapping him?” one passenger can be heard saying in the video. A member of the crew responds with “please stop your mobile phone.”
The Afghan man can be heard yelling to the camera: “Please send to the media. I am Afghan. I have Italian documents… they are rejecting the information.”
Ali said the man was upset, but “wasn’t being abusive” to the crew or passengers.
“All of a sudden, someone who seemed like they were an immigration officer came and started physically abusing the man by slapping him and pushing his face down whilst he was crying and shouting that he wouldn’t be safe going back to Afghanistan,” he said.
The passenger claimed he was an asylum seeker, Ali told RT.
RT has reached out to Turkish Airlines for comment, but has yet to receive a response.
Another passenger on board the flight, Qes Ahmed, told RT that the Afghan passenger was hit several times in clear view of other passengers and airline staff.
Ahmed said the man hitting the passenger was a “British official.”
The Afghan man was removed from the flight after “a bit of commotion” ensued when other passengers began to loudly voice their concerns, according to Ahmed.
On Facebook, Ahmed questioned the manner in which British officials dealt with the man, calling the incident “disgusting.”
“If he was such a threat, why have him on a public flight, within 5 meters of a child anyway?!? Seriously hope that justice is served to the old twat with an authority complex,” he said.