By Gosuke Kawan
By Gosuke Kawan
Rabat – The US government removed the laptop restriction on flights from Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates on Sunday, after Etihad Airways implemented additional airport security measure swhich made it “unnecessary.”
Etihad (which runs 45 direct flights each week from Abu Dhabi to the U.S.) said a facility at Abu Dhabi International Airport, which enables passengers to “clear US immigration before they land in the United States for superior security advantages that had allowed it to satisfy US requirements,” was to thank for the lifting of the ban.
Before the ban was lifted, officials of the US Transportation Security Administration inspected the new measures.
According to a statement provided to Reuters, Department of Homeland Security spokesman David Lapan said that the implementation of the extra security measures by Etihad Airlines were “ a model for foreign and domestic airlines.”
“We look forward to working with other airlines to ensure implementation of these critical measures as quickly as possible,” Lapan added.
While the UAE has received exemption from the U.S. laptop ban, the restriction placed upon airports in other Muslim-majority countries (Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and Turkey) is still in place.
The ban requires passengers to pack away any type of electronic devices larger than 16cm by 9.3cm by 1.5cm (6.3 in by 3.7 in by 0.6 in).
Smartphones and medical devices are not under same restrictions of the US ban.
The U.K. also currently has a laptop ban, but the UAE is not included in the list of countries affected. Instead, the British laptop ban applies to flights from Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia.”
In spite of this change, other airlines departing from the Middle East are to conform with the US ban.