All travelers flying into the U.S. from foreign countries will receive tightened random screening, and 100 percent of passengers from 14 terrorism-prone countries will be patted down and have their carry-ons searched, the Obama administration was notifying airlines on Sunday.
The more stringent Transportation Security Administration rules, to take effect at midnight, follow the attempted Christmas Day bombing of a U.S. airliner headed into Detroit from Amsterdam.
“These are changes that weren’t widely in place for all carriers or countries on 12/24,” a senior administration official told POLITICO. “These are sustainable measures that are a significant enhancement of our security posture. TSA will continuously review these measures with our global aviation partners to ensure the highest levels of security."
The countries on the State Department list are Cuba, Iran, Sudan and . Other countries covered by the TSA directive include Afghanistan, Libya and Somalia. A complete list was not released.
A much higher percentage of all travelers from all foreign countries will receive such screening than is currently the case, the official said. "The screening “could also include explosive detection technology or advanced imaging technology where it’s available,” the official said.
Kristin Lee of the TSA, which is part of the law enforcement officials and our domestic and international partners.”, announced: "Today the Transportation Security Administration issued new security directives to all United States and international air carriers with inbound flights to the U.S. effective January 4, 2010. The new directive includes long-term, sustainable security measures developed in consultation with
In other words, there will be a new normal for international travel into the U.S. The “enhanced security measures” apply to “all international flights to U.S. locations, including both U.S. and international carriers,” the official said.
“All international passengers will be screened and the majority of passengers will be screened using threat-based or random measures, the official said. “ These are designed to be sustainable measures that are a significant increase in our security posture.
The measures apply to all “passengers with passports from or itineraries throughand ‘countries of interest.’”
“This goes beyond simply looking at passports and now looks at itineraries from and through countries of interest,” the official said. “This is a significant step forward.”
Lee said in her statement: “Because effective aviation security must begin beyond our borders, and as a result of extraordinary cooperation from our global aviation partners, TSA is mandating that every individual flying into the U.S. from anywhere in the world traveling from or through nations that are State sponsors of terrorism or countries of interest will be required to go through enhanced screening. The directive also increases the use of enhanced screening technologies and mandates threat-based and random screening for passengers on U.S. bound international flights."