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|Posted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 5:54 am Post subject: US increases airport security worldwide
US increases airport security worldwide, following report of increased terror threat
July 02, 2014
The federal government is increasing security measures at some international airports with direct flights to the United States, based on recent intelligence about the continuing, worldwide terror threat, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said Wednesday.
Johnson gave no information about a specific threat, saying only that the change was based on the U.S. and its allies “continually (assessing) the global threat environment.”
However, the beefed up security is almost certainly a response to recent intelligence reports suggesting that Al Qaeda-linked terrorists in Syria are working with members of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula to blow up a commercial aircraft headed to the U.S. or Europe, as reported first by ABC News.
A counterterrorism official told AP that the terrorists are attempting to create a bomb that would go undetected through airport security.
The official declined to describe the kind of information that triggered this warning. Officials in the past have raised concerns about non-metallic explosives being surgically implanted inside a traveler's body, designed to be undetectable in pat-downs or metal detectors.
The call for increased security was not connected to Iraq or the recent violence there, said a second U.S. counterterrorism official who was not authorized to speak publicly by name. Another U.S. official, also speaking on condition of anonymity, said the increased security measures had nothing to do with the upcoming July Fourth holiday or any specific threat.
The extra security is out of an "abundance of caution," the U.S. official said.
Johnson has directed the Transportation Security Administration to carry out the changes.
“We will work to ensure these necessary steps pose as few disruptions to travelers as possible,” he said. “Aviation security includes a number of measures, both seen and unseen, informed by an evolving environment.”