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Wednesday, 22 March 2017 08:32

UK follows US on cabin device ban Featured

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Britain has followed the US in banning the carrying of larger electronic devices into the cabins of planes belonging to certain airlines. The ban applies to flights to British destinations while the US ban covers direct flights to the US mainland.

The US Department of Homeland Security said in a statement: "Evaluated intelligence indicates that terrorist groups continue to target commercial aviation and are aggressively pursuing innovative methods to undertake their attacks, to include smuggling explosive devices in various consumer items.

"Based on this information, Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly and Transportation Security Administration Acting Administrator Huban Gowadia have determined it is necessary to enhance security procedures for passengers at certain last point of departure airports to the United States."

There are some differences in the US and UK bans as indicated in the tweet below.

All electronic devices bigger than a mobile phone will have to be stored in checked baggage at 10 airports which have direct flights by certain airlines to the US and the UK.

The devices were listed as: laptops, tablets, e-readers, cameras, portable DVD players, electronic game units larger than a smartphone and travel printers/scanners.

"There is no impact on domestic flights in the United States or flights departing the United States. Electronic devices will continue to be allowed on all flights originating in the United States," the DHS statement said.

The airports hit by the US ban are: Queen Alia International Airport (Jordan), Cairo International Airport (Egypt), Ataturk International Airport (Turkey), King Abdul-Aziz International Airport (Saudi Arabia), King Khalid International Airport (Saudi Arabia), Kuwait International Airport, Mohammed V Airport (Morocco), Hamad International Airport (Qatar), Dubai International Airport (United Arab Emirates) and Abu Dhabi International Airport (United Arab Emirates).

The carriers hit by the UK ban — Royal Jordanian Airlines, Egypt Air, Turkish Airlines, Saudi Arabian Airlines, Kuwait Airways , Royal Air Maroc, Qatar Airways, Emirates and Etihad Airways — have until 24 March to fall in line. The new policy took effect early on Tuesday and will be in place indefinitely.

Five British carriers are affected by the UK ban: British Airways, EasyJet, Jet2.com, Monarch, Thomas Cook and Thomson. The foreign carriers affected are Pegasus Airways, Atlas-Global Airlines, Middle East Airlines, Tunis Air and Saudia.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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