Watch CBS News

Muslim Activist Amani Al-Khatahtbeh Says She Was Unfairly Removed From Flight At Newark Airport

NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) -- A Muslim woman from New Jersey claims she was unfairly removed from an American Airlines flight at Newark Airport after saying a passenger in first class harassed her.

Amani al-Khatahtbeh is an activist and blogger who also ran for Congress this year. She recounted the incident on social media.

"They're taking his word for it. They are literally coming to remove him instead of removing both of us, for example, or removing him," she said in a video.

Al-Khatahtbeh claims the fight with the man began at TSA security when he cut her in line.

Once on that Charlotte-bound flight, she claims the man complained about her because she made him "uncomfortable." That's when witnesses say officers came to al-Khatahtbeh to arrest her.

Jake Tapia was on the plane and calls it a racist incident.

"I got the gist that they wanted to take her off of the plane, and they didn't really give her a clear explanation as to why," Tapia told CBS2. "There were definitely some agitated passengers because they wanted to make the next flight, which I get, but I think complaining about your next flight is really missing the point of the racism that's happening right in front of you."

The whole plane was deboarded at one point.

Port Authority Police say al-Khatahtbeh was arrested and charged for trespass and delay of transportation.

American Airlines says it is investigating the incident.


You can get the latest news, sports and weather on our brand new CBS New York app. Download here.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.