March 23, 2017

US To Ban Electronic Devices On Flights Arriving From Certain Countries

21 March 2017, 02:51 | Austin Hogan

US To Ban Electronic Devices On Flights Arriving From Certain Countries

US To Ban Electronic Devices On Flights Arriving From Certain Countries

The nine airlines that operate direct flights to the US from those airports are Egyptair, Emirates Airline, Etihad Airways, Kuwait Airways, Qatar Airways, Royal Air Maroc, Royal Jordanian Airlines, Saudi Arabian Airlines and Turkish Airlines.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) declined to comment on the issue but is expected to make an announcement on Tuesday.

It is unclear which countries and airlines the ban will apply to, or how long the ban will be in place, but the official said no American carriers would be affected.

According to an announcement the airline posted on Twitter citing instructions from concerned USA departments, many popular electronic devices travelers carry on board planes, especially on long flights, including DVD players, tablets, computers, games and cameras, will be barred from being transported in carry-on luggage and instead must be put in checked baggage on those flights.

The Middle East's biggest airline says it is not aware of any restrictions on electronics in aircraft cabins on USA -bound flights. But, the airline deleted the tweet a few hours later. Devices such as Kindles, iPads, laptops and cameras larger than mobile phones would need to be checked in. He argued that theft of electronics from baggage would increase, pointing to such a trend following a similar ban in Britain in 2006.

The airports are in Amman, Jordan; Cairo; Kuwait City, Kuwait; Doha, Qatar; Dubai and Abu Dhabi, both in United Arab Emirates; Istanbul; Casablanca, Morocco; Riyadh and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Asked about the requirement, a TSA spokesperson in an email referred The Register to the Department of Homeland Security.

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Royal Jordanian Airlines told passengers that medical devices were still allowed. It's not yet clear if or how this ruling relates to the Trump administration's revised travel ban, which is now being challenged by US courts.

The officials said the decision was prompted by "evaluated intelligence" about ongoing potential threats to airplanes bound for the United States. This either means that passengers who are flying on these airlines will now be able to check these devices in or won't be able to travel with them at all.

It wouldn't be surprising if airlines associated with the six Muslim-majority countries covered by the Trump administration's latest proposed travel ban - Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen - were also affected. Rather, it was the result of an unspecific security threat.

Last February an aircraft operated by the Dubai-based carrier Daallo was damaged by an explosion shortly after take-off from the Somali capital, Mogadishu.

The new ban has been under consideration for several weeks, according to USA media.

"Fly to the U.S. with RJ now that you're allowed to", the ad read, along with a headline that crossed out "Ban" to say "Bon Voyage!"

Word of the ban was first made public on Monday afternoon - not by administration officials, but in a tweet sent out by Royal Jordanian Airlines.

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