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Emirates and Etihad to tighten screening on Australia flights

Etihad Airways said the measures are to be put in effect on Thursday [Getty]

Date of publication: 3 April, 2017

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Emirates and Etihad airlines will boost screening for passengers flying to Australia this week after the country imposed new requirements for enhanced explosives detection.

Emirates and Etihad airlines will start to implement heavier screening measures for flights to Australia, the UAE companies said on Monday.

The announcement comes after Australia imposed new requirements for enhanced explosives detection, saying it will increase screening of passenger baggage on flights from Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, as well as Doha in Qatar.

While the directive stops short of the sweeping electronics ban introduced last month by the United States and Britain, it may include targeted screening of passengers' personal electronic devices.

Emirates and Etihad Airways, two of the largest airlines in the Middle East, said the measures would take effect on Thursday.

Read also: World aviation body slams ‘unacceptable’ Anglo-American laptop ban

"The new directive requires additional screening at the gate, but there is no restriction on electronic devices," said an Emirates spokesperson.

The new screening requirement covers direct flights on Emirates, Etihad, Qatar Airways and Qantas Airways. It does not apply to flights bound for the UAE out of Australian airports.

Etihad operates two daily flights to Sydney, while Emirates has 11 daily flights to international airports across Australia.

A trend of increasing travel restrictions on Muslim majority countries began after US President Donald Trump announced that there would be an electronics ban on various Muslim majority countries in the latter days of March.

The UK was quick to follow suit by implementing its own ban. Soon after, both the US and UK were subject to global condemnation, including a number of Arab airlines responding to the ban.

Agencies contributed to this report 

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