US defends move to ban laptops, cameras as cabin baggage
The US on Wednesday defended its move to ban large electronic devices like laptops and cameras as cabin baggage on US-bound planes from 10 foreign destinations, mostly in Muslim-majority countries, citing concerns over terrorists' interest in targeting commercial flights.
Passengers travelling to the US from these airports in eight countries cannot carry cameras and laptops as cabin baggage under a new Trump administration order.
Being implemented for an indefinite period of time, the new security measures apply to 10 specific airports -- Queen Alia International Airport (AMM), Cairo International Airport (CAI), Ataturk International Airport (IST), King Abdul-Aziz International Airport (JED), King Khalid International Airport (RUH), Kuwait International Airport (KWI), Mohammed V Airport (CMN), Hamad International Airport (DOH), Dubai International Airport (DXB) and Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH).
"Remember that these are 10 airports of last point of departure to the US out of 250 that come here. Part of it is to provide appropriate notification to the host country, to the host airlines, and give them opportunity to get those procedures in place," White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters at his daily news conference.
"I'm not going to comment any further about the security measures that have been taking place or are taking place.
Implementing something of this nature in that timeframe is pretty darn quick," Spicer said in response to a question.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said the aviation security enhancements will include requiring that all personal electronic devices larger than a cell phone or smart phone be placed in checked baggage at 10 airports where flights are departing f or the United States. However, there're no such restrictions on domestic flights or flights departing the US.