BA chairman attacks US airport security checks

The chairman of British Airways has said some “completely redundant” airport security checks should be scrapped and the UK should stop “kowtowing” to US security demands.Practices such as forcing passengers to take off their shoes should be abandoned, Martin Broughton said.And he questioned why laptop computers needed to be screened separately.He also criticised the US for imposing increased checks on US-bound flights but not on its own domestic services.The US stepped up security in January in the wake of an alleged bomb plot.It introduced tougher screening rules, including body pat-down searches and carry-on baggage checks, for passengers arriving from 14 nations which the authorities deem to be a security risk.Passengers from any foreign country may also be checked at random.Speaking at the UK Airport Operators’ Association annual conference, Mr Broughton said that no-one wanted weaker security.But he was quoted by the Financial Times as telling the conference: “We all know there’s quite a number of elements in the security programme which are completely redundant and they should be sorted out.”Mr Broughton, who is also chairman of Liverpool FC, added the UK should only agree to security checks that the US requires for passengers on domestic flights.

“America does not do internally a lot of the things they demand that we do,” he said. “We shouldn’t stand for that.””We should say, ‘we’ll only do things which we consider to be essential and that you Americans also consider essential’.”Airport security worldwide has risen since the 9/11 terrorist attacks.The US’s Transport Security Administration said it worked closely with its international partners to ensure the best possible security.”We constantly review and evolve our security measures based on the latest intelligence – Bbc