Afghan refugee heading to the UK gives birth to baby girl at 30,000 feet

29 August 2021, 08:33 | Updated: 29 August 2021, 08:34

By Asher McShane

An Afghan refugee fleeing to the UK gave birth to a baby girl at 30,000 feet while on an evacuation flight destined for Birmingham.

Soman Noori, 26, was travelling on an evacuation flight from Dubai to Birmingham, having previously left Kabul, when she went into labour in airspace over Kuwait, Turkish Airlines said.

There was no doctor on board the flight, forcing the Turkish Airlines cabin crew to deliver the baby girl, who has been named Havva by her mother and father, 30-year-old husband Taj Moh Hammat.

Her name translates to Eve in English, and she is the couple's third child.

Turkish Airlines said in a statement that both mother and baby were healthy, and although the flight had landed in Kuwait as a precaution, it then carried on its route to Birmingham and landed at 11.45am.

A spokesperson for Turkish Airlines said: "After the pregnant passenger informed the cabin crew about her labour pains, the crew asked whether there was a doctor in the aircraft.

"Due to no doctor being available on the flight, cabin crew facilitated the birth in accordance with their training.

"The baby girl was called Havva - a name of Hebrew origin meaning "life".

Photographs and video footage showed Turkish Airlines crew cradling the baby and handing her to her mother.

Approximately 117,000 people have been evacuated from Afghanistan since the Taliban takeover on 15 August.