John Kelly says he's considering a ban on laptops in airline cabins from flights that leave all nations, not just Europe and the Middle East as is now the case.
The head of the Department of Homeland Security said Sunday that he is considering expanding the US ban on laptops and larger electronics from carry-on bags in all global flights. Kelly said that terrorists were "obsessed" with the idea of "knocking down an airplane in flight - particularly a United States carrier, if it΄s full of mostly USA folks".
The U.S. -imposed ban preventing plane passengers on certain U.S. -bound flights from taking electronic devices larger than a mobile phone into the cabin could be about to get a whole lot more troublesome for travelers.
"I might", Kelly replied, and then upon being asked to expand said "There is a real threat".
Despite seemingly reaching an accord with the European Union earlier this month, the U.S. is still seeking to expand its ban beyond flights originating from some nations in the Middle East and Africa.
Airlines are concerned that a broad ban on laptops may erode customer demand. But none wants an incident aboard one of its aeroplanes.
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The White House is considering expanding a ban on laptops and other tech devices to all flights entering and leaving the US.
"The Government continuously monitors shifts in the threat environment domestically and overseas to ensure we have the best security arrangements in place to meet the challenges we face".
Among the enhanced security measures will likely be tighter screening of carry-on items to allow Transport Security Administration (TSA) agents to discern problematic items in tightly stuffed bags.
Pointing to airline policies to generate more revenue by charging people for checked baggage, Kelly said people trying to avoid fees to check bags were stuffing their carry-on bags to point where they could not get any more in. Delta Air Lines said in a statement it "continues to be in close contact with the US Department of Homeland Security", while Munoz applauded the administration for giving the company a "heads up".
The US government later said it had "evaluated intelligence" pointing towards terrorists "aggressively pursuing" methods for carrying out foreign attacks, with the United Kingdom government adding that the measures were "necessary, effective, and proportionate".
Kelly said the USA "might, and likely will" expand these TSA screening procedures nationwide.