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Witness describes disbelief after women invasively searched on Qatar flight

Article image for Witness describes disbelief after women invasively searched on Qatar flight

An invasive strip-search on a group of Australian women at a Middle Eastern airport is being condemned by the Federal Government.

All females, including 13 Australians, onboard a Qatar flight from Doha to Sydney earlier this month were forced to disembark and undergo an invasive examination after a premature baby was found abandoned in a bathroom.

The airport says a search was ordered to find the mother, amid concerns for her welfare.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has formally registered “serious concerns” about the incident with Qatari authorities.

Wolfgang Barbeck, a witness to the incident, told Deborah Knight the woman were visibly upset after the strip-search.

“The women were asked to leave the plane and the men stayed on board.

“They came back maybe half an hour later and couldn’t believe what had happened. Some were upset, angry, one was crying but genuinely there was disbelief.”

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Deputy Opposition leader Richard Marles told Deborah an investigation is necessary.

“It is a seriously horrific report.

“This needs to be dealt with very seriously at the highest level.”

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Image: Getty/NurPhoto 

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