In March this year, the United States Department of Homeland Security placed an in-flight ban on laptops and large electronics to 10 airports across eight predominantly Muslim countries. Meaning travelers from these countries to the U.S. were not allowed to carry their laptops into the airplanes.
This ban is part of a series of bans by the Trump administration that is supposed to preempt and stop terrorist activities before they reach the American soil. The ban was supposedly informed by intelligence report indicating that the terrorists were developing smaller bombs that could be integrated into gadgets such as laptop computers.
However, it would seem some of the affected airlines have since revamped their security measures and had the ban lifted. The Turkish Airlines and Emirates made a statement to newsrooms saying the U.S. ban has been lifted on their airlines. The two airlines say the U.S.-bound flights laptops ban out of Dubai, and Istanbul has been lifted.
Yesterday, an Emirates representative told Reuters that the in-cabin ban on laptops was lifted for flights flying out of Dubai. This development came about as a result of the implementation of new security measures announced by the US Homeland Security last week.
The Turkish Airlines says the lifting of the in-flight laptop ban was announced in a tweet made on Tuesday by the CEO Bilal Eksi. The CEO further adds that he also expects the ban to be lifted for flights going into the UK.
— Turkish Airlines (@TurkishAirlines) July 4, 2017
The US and UK security protocol was revamped and now requires a more rigorous screening of passengers and electronics on flights coming from specific countries. The UK placed the in-flight laptop ban shortly after the US. The UK ban was on flights from Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey.
Last Sunday, the Etihad Airways also made the announcement the in-flight ban on laptops and other large electronics had been lifted after US officials established that the airline conducted a thorough passenger screening at the Abu Dhabi International Airport, where it is the national carrier.
The ban caused Emirates 82% decline in profit
The Emirates airline has been particularly critical of the US ban. The airline said the ban led to a decline in its US-bound flights. In May Emirates reported an 82% drop in annual profit, which the airline mainly blames it on the US ban.
Last Tuesday, Saudi Arabian Airline too made the announcement that soon it expects the US to lift the ban on flights out of Riyadh and Jeddah by July 19th. However, US officials seemed non-committal telling Reuters that it is too early to say anything conclusive yet about Saudi Arabian Airline, especially with regards to whether they have fully complied with the new security guidelines.