YouTube star Adam Saleh on Wednesday claimed he was kicked off a Delta flight for speaking Arabic to his mother on the phone, an assertion that drew scepticism online because of his history of posting prank videos involving airlines.
Delta confirmed in a statement to Business Insider that the two passengers were removed from Delta flight 1 after more than 20 customers expressed “discomfort” over a “disturbance in the cabin.”
“Two customers were removed from this flight and later rebooked after a disturbance in the cabin resulted in more than 20 customers expressing their discomfort,” the statement read. “We’re conducting a full review to understand what transpired. We are taking allegations of discrimination very seriously; our culture requires treating others with respect.”
The 23-year-old social media celeb posted several videos to Periscope and Twitter showing Delta crew escorting him and his friend, fellow YouTuber Slim Albaher, off the plane.
“We got kicked out of a @Delta aeroplane because I spoke Arabic to my mum on the phone with my friend Slim…” Saleh said on Twitter. His video has been retweeted hundreds of thousands of times.
We got kicked out of a @Delta aeroplane because I spoke Arabic to my mum on the phone and with my friend slim… WTFFFFFFFF please spread pic.twitter.com/P5dQCE0qos
— Adam Saleh (@omgAdamSaleh) December 21, 2016
Saleh said in one of the videos posted that he called his mother before the plane took off and was speaking to her in Arabic. His friend Albaher was also speaking Arabic, he said. The captain then came to him and asked to speak to him outside. Saleh and Slim were told they were being removed for speaking loudly, Saleh said in a Periscope video.
In another video posted, Saleh said that his speaking a different language made other passengers feel uncomfortable.
After Saleh and Albaher were removed from the flight, Saleh said on Twitter they were rebooked on a different airline and had to go through security again.