Budget airline easyJet is demanding answers from Nice airport after pictures emerged of an airport worker punching a passenger who was holding a baby.

The incident is alleged to have happened while a flight destined for Luton was delayed for over 13 hours due to a technical fault with the aircraft.

The picture apparently shows an airport worker wearing uniform punching the man in the face with his left fist.

The passenger who took the photograph told the BBC that her husband intervened before police were alerted.

Both men were reportedly taken away, however, fellow passengers demanded that the man was allowed to fly and was clapped as he boarded the flight.

In a statement the carrier said: “EasyJet is very concerned to see this picture and can confirm the person in the photo is not an easyJet member of staff and they do not work for easyJet’s ground handling agents in Nice.

“We are urgently taking this up with Nice Airport and their special assistance provider Samsic, who we understand the person photographed works for.”

The airline apologised for the delay to flight EZY2122 because of a “technical issue with the aircraft”.

“Passengers were provided with updates and refreshment vouchers during this time and the flight landed in London Luton last night.

“The safety and well-being of our passengers and crew is always easyJet’s highest priority. EasyJet sincerely apologises for the delay and thanks passengers for their patience.”