Published: Mon, October 30, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Increased Security Begins for US Bound International Flights

Increased Security Begins for US Bound International Flights

Emirates has confirmed that all of its US-bound flights will be subject to further, enhanced security screening measures - starting today (October 26).

"The security measures affect all individuals, worldwide passengers and U.S. citizens, traveling to the United States from a last point of departure global location", said Lisa Farbstein, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Transportation Security Administration.

TSA says other changes include a heightened screening of electronic devices and stricter security measures around airports.

The airlines suggested that passengers arrive early for their flights to account for any additional delays caused by the new rules.

Lufthansa, Emirates, Air France and Norwegian Air confirmed that United States authorities had asked for tougher controls at departure airports for non-stop flights to the country, but some airlines said they had received permission to delay implementing the new rules until January. He said he didn't know what kind of questions would be asked.

The new measures come as US President Donald Trump's administration works to toughen controls on refugees and immigrants amid worries that militant groups like the militant Islamic State (IS) group and Al Qaeda are both trying to send potential attackers into the US and to smuggle bombs on board a US-bound flight.

The airline says it will start the new procedures on Thursday at Paris Orly Airport and a week later, on November 2, at Charles de Gaulle Airport. According to Emirates, the new directive requires passenger pre-screening interviews at the check-in counter or boarding gate.

Other airlines, including Korean Air Lines Co., Asiana Airlines Inc., and Royal Jordanian, said they received permission to delay implementing the new protocols until next year.

An Etihad spokesperson told Khaleej Times that their operations are "normal" at the moment and will give an update on new security measures while the Bahrain-based Gulf Air did not issue any statement yet. Agricultural and veterinary products will also be tightly screened.

Details of the new rules first became apparent in a statement by Dubai-based Emirates, which operates the world's busiest airport for worldwide travel.

Those without bags would have a similar interview at their gates, AP reported Cathay Pacific as saying.

It wasn't immediately clear if other global airlines would be affected, though the Trump administration previously rolled out a laptop ban and travel bans that have thrown global airlines into disarray. United declined to comment, while American did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The new pre-screening interviews are in line with a request by USA authorities following the lifting of the ban on laptops in airplane cabins for some Middle East airlines.

The U.S. Transportation Security Administration announced in June that there would be heightened security for global flights to the U.S. starting this fall.

Emirates said in a statement Wednesday that it would begin doing "pre-screening interviews" at its check-in counters for passengers flying out of Dubai and at boarding gates for transit and transfer fliers.

WestJet passengers go through preclearance security at some but not all of the Canadian airports the airline operates from.

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