A passenger trying to get home on a United Airlines flight was dragged-off of it and now the event has sparked a worldwide protest against the conduct of the airlines.
Video footage of the horrific incident started circulating shortly after the incident took place on Sunday, with calls for a boycott of the US airlines. The video showed a man-identified by US media as a doctor of Vietnamese descent who has lived in the US for years-being forcibly pulled from his seat screaming, by three security personnel.
According to the details provided, the incident took place on Sunday on a United Express flight which was on its way to Chicago from Louisville, Kentucky. Since the flight had been overbooked, the airlines asked for volunteers to give up their seats. The police were called when one of the passengers refused to leave the plane.
The officers belonged from Chicago Department of Aviation and since the incident, even the department has come under fire since the officers physically dragged the passengers and manhandled him.
In a statement on Monday, the Chicago Department of Aviation said the incident was “not in accordance with our standard operating procedure and the actions of the aviation security officer are obviously not condoned by the department.”
“That officer has been placed on leave effective today pending a thorough review of the situation,” the statement said.
Video of the middle-aged man being dragged off were also widely circulated on China’s Twitter-like platform called Sina Weibo and it sparked an outrage since initially it was thought that the passenger was of Chinese descent.
“Shameless! We won´t forgive them. Ethnic Chinese around the world please boycott United Airlines!” wrote one commentator.
United Airlines released a statement on its website on Monday to address the issue.
“This is an upsetting event to all of us,” said chief executive Oscar Munoz, noting that the airline was conducting a “detailed review of what happened.”
“We are also reaching out to this passenger to talk directly to him and further address and resolve this situation,” he said.