A Muslim woman said that Rome Airport staff ordered her to take off her hijab if she wanted to get on a flight to London.
Aghnia Adzkia was passing through security when she was allegedly asked to remove her religious headgear, The Sun reported on Saturday.
She added that she felt to have been discriminated against and says she saw nuns passing through security without being asked to remove their headscarves.
The Indonesian citizen made a video of her experience at Ciampino Airport in the Italian capital of Rome .
In the clip she can be seen repeatedly standing her ground, demanding to see the law stating that the hijab must be removed at an airport security check.
But the officers were adamant that they would not let her pass unless she followed their rules .
The woman security official can be heard saying: “You are not safe .
“You could hide something in your hair. If you don’t take it off, we do not know if there’s something inside, okay? You are not safe for us .”
Aghnia alleges she was asked to go to a private room so her hijab could be checked.
But Aghnia refused to take off her hijab on principle claiming she was being unfairly targeted.
She claims a male security officer then dragged her out of the security area in “indecent way” grabbing her bag and shouting at her to be quiet.
Aghnia posted a furious social media post about the experience, which she says took place as she was travelling to London.
She wrote: “I wasn’t prepared to trust them unless they could cite me a law or provide me with a legal document that saying they were authorised to have to check what is underneath of my hijab.
“It is a matter of human dignity and rights. For what reason were they asked me to take off my hijab ?”
Later the same evening, Aghnia booked a ticket to fly to London from Leonardo da Vinci–Fiumicino Airport, also in Rome.
Security staff again asked her to remove her hijab, this time she agreed and was able to get her flight.
In 2010 the UK’s Home Office said that airport border staff should ask passengers wearing veils or other face coverings to remove coverings so they can be identified as the rightful passport holder.
The operator of the airport in Rome released a statement saying: “What happened to Ms Aghnia Adzkia solely and exclusively concerns compliance with safety procedures. The passenger, when passing the security gates, set off an alarm in the head area and it was therefore necessary to investigate the case, which could not be overlooked.
“For this reason, our staff asked her to go through to a private room, where they could check her head and headdress, as is strictly required by European and national laws, the purpose of which is to ensure safety and civil cohabitation.
“When Ms Aghnia refused to remove her headdress, requesting to read the legislation, she was shown the National Security Programme, which was promptly translated into English by our staff. Further to her continued refusal, our staff were forced to move the passenger away from the control area.
“Ms Aghnia subsequently returned to that area (and, on that occasion, filmed the video) and then left Ciampino airport. She later departed from Fiumicino airport on another flight, passing through security without any issues, this time removing her headdress.
“We are truly sorry for the fact that the young passenger had a negative experience whilst travelling via Ciampino airport. At the same time, however, we reiterate that what happened is completely unrelated to any form of discrimination.
“The passenger simply did not wish to comply with basic security requirements, which are implemented with due care and sensitivity by our staff, in the interests of safety for all passengers, including Ms Aghnia Adzkia .”