U.S. lifts laptop ban on Abu Dhabi flights
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — The capital of the United Arab Emirates became the first city to be exempt from a U.S. ban on laptop computers being in the cabins of airplanes coming from the Mideast, the country’s flag carrier said Sunday.
Long-haul airline Etihad said it welcomed the decision by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, which comes “subject to enhanced security measures” at Abu Dhabi International Airport. That airport already has a U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility that allows passengers to clear screening they’d otherwise have to go through when landing in America.
Homeland Security spokesman David Lapan said U.S. officials already had seen that “the measures have been implemented correctly and to the full extent required” in Abu Dhabi. He said American monitors would make further visits to ensure the checks were being done properly.
The U.S. ban, first announced in March as a security measure, now applies to nonstop U.S.-bound flights from nine international airports in Amman, Jordan; Kuwait City; Cairo; Istanbul; Jeddah and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; Casablanca, Morocco; Doha, Qatar; and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.