Emirates says complies with US procedures
Dubai, May 6, 2010
Emirates airline said on Thursday it was in full compliance with passenger check-in procedures in a statement issued days after the suspected Times Square bomber nearly left the US on one of its flights.
Washington ordered tighter airline screening on Wednesday to stop passengers on the 'no-fly' list from boarding flights, following an attempt by Faisal Shahzad, the Pakistani-American accused in the failed New York car bombing, to leave on a Dubai-bound flight.
'Emirates fully cooperated with and responded immediately to all local and federal authorities on all matters related to its flight EK 202 where a passenger was removed from the aircraft by US law enforcement officials,' the Dubai government-owned airline said.
Airlines will now have to re-check passenger manifest against the list -- banning people from flying inside the United States as well as to and from the country -- within two hours of notification of a special circumstance about a person, a US
administration official said on Wednesday.
Prior to the change they were required to do the check within 24 hours, a loophole that may have enabled Shahzad to board an Emirates flight late on Monday.
'Emirates is in full compliance with all passenger check-in procedures in the US and works closely with both the Transport Security Administration and the US Customs and Border Protection agencies to update security watch lists on a regular and timely basis,' the company said.
US authorities had said on Tuesday that an investigation was underway to determine whether Emirates made a mistake in letting Shahzad on one of its aircraft.
The suspect, 30, was arrested and charged with driving the car bomb into Times Square and trying to detonate it. He has admitted to his role in the plot and receiving bomb-making training in Pakistan, according to court papers. - Reuters