Laptop Ban: Royal Jordanian, Kuwait Airways Say Now Exempt
Royal Jordanian and Kuwait Airways said on Sunday passengers could take laptops and large electronic devices in the cabin on flights to the United States, the latest Middle East airlines to be exempted from a US ban.
Royal Jordanian and Kuwait Airways join Emirates, Etihad Airways, Qatar Airways and Turkish Airline who each announced last week a lifting of the ban.
In March, the United States banned laptops and other large electronic devices on direct flights originating at 10 airports in eight countries – Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and Turkey – to address fears that bombs could be concealed in them.
Royal Jordanian, which flies to New York, Chicago and Detroit from Amman, Jordan, lifted the ban after new security measures were implemented for US-bound flights, airline President Stefan Pichler said in a statement.
State-owned Kuwait Airways, which flies from Kuwait to New York via Ireland, said the ban was lifted after US officials inspected security measures on its flights.
US officials did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment on the lifting of the ban affecting the Jordanian and Kuwaiti carriers.
The United States announced on June 29 enhanced security measures for flights to the country, requiring additional time to screen passengers and electronic devices for possible explosives.
The new US measures, which take effect within three weeks of the announcement, will affect around 325,000 passengers a day travelling on 180 airlines from 280 airports around the world, according to the US Department of Homeland Security.
Airlines that fail to meet the new security requirements could still face in-cabin restrictions on electronic devices.
Saudi Arabian Airlines (Saudia) has said it expects the ban to be lifted on flights from Jeddah and Riyadh by July 19.
Royal Air Maroc also believes it can have the ban lifted for flights out of Casablanca’s Mohammed V International Airport by July 19, a senior official from the state-owned airline told Reuters on July 6.
State-owned EgyptAir has also been affected by the ban.