It was the selfie seen around the world.
When British oil worker Ben Innes saw that his EgyptAir flight was being hijacked by Seif Eddin Mustafa, he calmly approached the crazed loner and asked for a selfie.
Mustafa, amazingly agreed. He was in the middle of a terrifying hijacking, demanding the plane divert to Cyprus so he could speak to his estranged wife.
Innes’s actions have prompted a fierce debate online, with some praising his bravery while others have attacked him for recklessness.
But now Innes has confesses why he really asked for the photograph:
“I … thought it would be a good way of getting close enough to have a look at his device to try and work out if it was real,” he said while speaking to the press for the first time after the hijacking.
“I could see something taped around his waist and he was holding onto some sort of trigger.
“I wanted to work out if it was a dead man’s trigger that would set off the bomb if he let it go.”
Innes and all the other passengers were safely rescued when Mustafa was given a chance to speak to his wife and surrendered. The bomb strapped to his body was a fake.