​Briton takes selfie with Egyptair plane hijacker

Ben Innes explains why he did it

Updated: 
​Briton takes selfie with Egyptair plane hijacker

A British man who posed for a selfie with the Egyptair plane hijacker said he did it to get a better look at the device - and to keep "cheerful in the face of adversity".

The image of Ben Innes standing next to the captor on the Egyptair flight has gone viral after he posted it on Facebook.

See also: Man grounds flight after making 'bomb' joke while flirting

See also: Woman threatens to blow up plane during luggage row

The hijacker, named as Seif Eldin Mustafa, forced the plane to divert to Larnaca airport in Cyrpus, where a five-hour standoff ensued.

The plane had 62 people on board and had been scheduled to fly from Alexandria to Cairo.

​Briton takes selfie with Egyptair plane hijacker


At one point, many of the passengers were released, but seven were kept hostage on board. Mustafa was later arrested and the suicide belt was found to be fake.

Mr Innes, an oil worker originally from Leeds but now living in Aberdeen, was a passenger on the Airbus A320 on Tuesday when the man threatened to blow up the plane.

Speaking to The Sun, Mr Innes said: "I'm not sure why I did it, I just threw caution to the wind while trying to stay cheerful in the face of adversity.

"I figured if his bomb was real I'd nothing lose anyway, so took a chance to get a closer look at it.

"I got one of the cabin crew to translate for me and asked him if I could do a selfie with him.

"He just shrugged OK so I stood by him and smiled for the camera while a stewardess did the snap. It has to be the best selfie ever."

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Innes' flatmate Chris Tundogan said Innes was "not afraid to shy away from anything ... I find it pretty mental but that's just Ben I guess!"

According to the Guardian, another friend said Innes was a "wild man" and "very into his banter", and that the stunt was "totally in character for him".

The Cypriot president said Mustafa was unstable and the incident was not terror-related, reports the BBC.


Related video:

EgyptAir Plane Hijacker Arrested