CCTV video from Hamad International Airport allegedly shows moments following discovery of a newborn baby

CCTV footage allegedly shows moment abandoned baby discovered at airport.
CCTV footage allegedly shows moment abandoned baby discovered at airport. Photo credit: Doha News

A Doha-based news agency has obtained footage that it says shows what took place following the discovery of a newborn baby girl at Hamad International Airport (HIA) in Qatar.

The video was published by Doha News just hours after it was confirmed that Qatari authorities were investigating the incident, which resulted in numerous women being subjected to invasive physical examinations at the airport.

In the footage, three airport staff members who appear to be male and dressed in yellow and blue, can be seen huddling around the baby, with one cradling it in their arms.

The camera then follows the men as they walk along the corridor towards the camera, with one of the men looking directly at the camera before being met by an airport official.

The camera is positioned directly above the group and the newborn's face can can be made out, but isn't clearly visible.

The group appear calm and remain at their location, directly under the camera as the video ends after one minute. 

On Wednesday, Qatar officially "expressed regret" over the treatment of the female travellers after Australian authorities revealed women on as many as 10 flights were searched for signs of recent childbirth following the newborn being found.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison told reporters in Canberra that "Australia's strong objections and views" about the incident were widely shared, but didn't elaborate.

Qatar's prime minister, Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz Al Thani, has ordered an investigation into the incident, in which women were forced to disembark planes at HIA and undergo examinations in parked ambulances.

A baby girl had earlier been found in a trash can at the airport, concealed in a plastic bag in what "appeared to be a shocking and appalling attempt to kill her", the Qatari government's communications office said in a statement.

"While the aim of the urgently decided search was to prevent the perpetrators of the horrible crime from escaping, the State of Qatar regrets any distress or infringement on the personal freedoms of any traveller caused by this action," the statement said. 

The baby, whose mother has not been located, is safe and receiving medical care in Doha.

On Wednesday it emerged that in addition to the 18 women on a Qatar Airways flight to Sydney, another nine flights had been searched and Australia was working closely with other unnamed countries on the issue.

Human Rights Watch said in a statement that Qatar should prohibit forced gynaecological exams, and it was also concerned at the circumstances that may have led to a baby being abandoned. Sexual relations outside of wedlock are criminalised in Qatar, with hospitals required to report pregnant women to authorities.