by Mark Albert
WASHINGTON (TVR) – The Trump administration, under pressure from European allies, has unexpectedly decided not to announce an electronics ban expansion that would cover U.S.-bound flights from Europe, according to a report from BBC News.
The article, published late Wednesday night East Coast time, stated that “US and EU officials have decided against a ban on laptops and tablets in cabin baggage on flights from Europe” but that “other measures were still being considered.”
On mid-morning Thursday, the Associated Press quoted an unnamed official as saying the electronics ban expansion was “off the table” for now.
Officials at the Department of Homeland Security did not immediately respond to requests from The Voyage Report seeking confirmation or comment of the BBC’s report.
In remarks at George Washington University last month, U.S. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said it was “likely” the ban would be expanded to cover more routes beyond the initial 10 airports in the Middle East and North Africa, “given the sophisticated threats aviation faces” and in “an attempt to safeguard lives.”
When the electronics ban expansion appeared imminent last week, many aviation and travel organizations went public with concerns, and security officials from the European Union called for an urgency summit, frustrated by what they viewed as inadequate consultations by American authorities.
The global trade representative for the world’s airports, Airports Council International, declared there had been a “lack of meaningful security cooperation” between the U.S. and E.U. and that it is “not conducive to effective security and potentially compromises trust in the aviation security system.”