THE Trump administration has today confirmed new restrictions on electronics put in place for travellers flying to the US from certain countries in the Middle East and Northern Africa.
The use of electronic devices larger than a mobile phone, such as tablets and laptops, is strictly banned and they must be kept in the hold.
The ban affects passengers travelling from airports in Amman, Cairo, Kuwait, Doha, Dubai, Istanbul, Abu Dhabi, Casablanca (Morocco), Riyadh and Yeddah. All these countries are Muslim majority.
Official sources have clarified that the decision has nothing to do with Trump’s efforts to impose a travel ban on six predominantly Muslim countries. The spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security has argued that the government “does not go against specific nations” and “we base the decisions on airports involved according to intelligence gathered and evaluated.”
The restrictions will be in place indefinitely and airlines flying from these countries into the United States have until Friday to comply with the new controls.
Authorities have not yet clarified why the restrictions only apply to travellers arriving in the United States and not to those who fly the same routes from US airports.
The Department of Homeland Security has indicated that the measures “will remain in force until the threat changes” and has not ruled out extending it to other airports if circumstances change.