Iraqi man prevented from flying on EasyJet flight after passenger reports seeing 'Isis messages on his phone'

Tensions are high in Europe's transit hubs following the Brussels attacks 

Will Worley
Monday 28 March 2016 13:57 BST
EasyJet boss Carolyn McCall warns price of flights could go up if the UK leaves the EU
EasyJet boss Carolyn McCall warns price of flights could go up if the UK leaves the EU (Getty)

An Iraqi man was prevented from taking his flight after a fellow passenger reported him over what she thought were "Isis messages" on his mobile phone.

The woman alerted staff to her suspicions prior to the take off on the Easyjet flight from Vienna to London on Saturday.

The plane was delayed by three hours as the passengers were taken off the plane and further security measures were undertaken.

The flight departed without the man or the woman, who stayed in Austria to face further questioning.

The man was later released without charge.

"There was nothing suspicious found and he has been allowed to continue his journey," Austrian interior ministry spokesman Karl-Heinz Grundboeck said.

"The only thing outstanding is a detailed analysis of his mobile phone."

Easyjet has apologised for the delay but maintained that safety is the company’s first priority.

A spokeswoman told Mail Online: “EasyJet can confirm that flight EZY5352 from Vienna to London Gatwick was delayed due to additional security checks before departure.

“The safety and security of its passengers and crew is our highest priority.

“We apologise for the delay and any inconvenience caused as a result.”

Travel in Europe has become particularly tense following the Brussels attacks last week.

Security has been increased throughout the continent after the bombings which killed 31 people and injured scores more.

It is not the first time Muslims or people of Middle Eastern appearance have been faced troubles while flying.

In January, four men alleged they were ejected from an American Airlines flight because their looks made other passengers “uneasy”.

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