In Rudaw 

Iraqi pilot suspended from flying after allowing female model into cockpit

The Iraqi civil aviation authority has decided to suspend a pilot from flying until further notice after he was found to have allowed a female model into the cockpit midway in the sky.

“The Air Safety Department of the Iraqi Civil Aviation Authority suspended one of the pilots working in one of the Iraqi national carriers, after allowing a female media worker to enter the cockpit while flying,” reads a statement from the authority released on Wednesday night.

The decision was made after footage went viral on social media showing the pilot chatting with female model and media worker Willian Al Bayati while flying the plane.

According to the video, dated from September 1, 2020, but has just gone viral, Bayati thanks the pilot who she identifies as Captain Rafaa, for his work, and jokes about how easy he makes flying look. The end of the footage shows the landing of the plane.

“It constitutes a violation of civil aviation laws that prevent cases that endanger the lives of travelers,” the aviation authority detailed.

It added that they have “launched an investigation into the pilot in the air safety department.”

Iraqi Airways is the national carrier of Iraq. It is considered one of the oldest airlines in the Middle East.

The airline has previously been banned from the European Union for safety violations, and has had several public scandals.

In July 2018, two Iraqi pilots got into a physical fight over dinner while flying a Boeing 737 with 160 passengers on board. Source