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Talks on airplane laptop ban end with no ban, more talks

22 May 2017

American and European officials met in Brussels yesterday to discuss the Trump administration's proposed ban on laptops and tablets on trans-Atlantic flights, and according to reports, the measure won't be implemented anytime soon.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA), which represents 265 airlines, wrote to both the European Union and the US State Department on Tuesday to oppose the proposed ban, which it said would deeply affect the economy and cause the equivalent of 1.1 billion dollars (£848 million) in lost time to passengers.

There remain concerns with the aviation industry that the ban could still reemerge in the coming weeks.

It emerged from reports in the U.S. earlier this week that Al Qaeda in Yemen had figured out how to produce explosives so thin that they could be concealed in the inside of a laptop, making their detection very hard.

With the USA pushing to expand the ban, and other groups suggesting it should be rolled back, we may be at a tipping point.

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Laptops and tablet computers will not be banned from cabin baggage on flights to the United States from Europe, officials have decided.

The US has already introduced such a ban on flights from Cairo; Istanbul; Kuwait City; Doha, Qatar; Casablanca, Morocco; Amman, Jordan; Riyadh and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; as well as Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates. European officials were reportedly not given a guarantee that a laptop ban was off the table, and instead, Duke promised to keep European officials in the loop if any other measures were to be applied.

Officials will be meeting again in Washington DC next week to "further assess shared risks and solutions for protecting airline passengers, whilst ensuring the smooth functioning of global air travel". The intelligence came from a USA partner and was considered so sensitive that it was distributed among only a small circle within the US government and withheld from broader sharing among English-speaking allies that US intelligence agencies do as a matter of course. US officials have begun meeting with European Union representatives in Brussels on May 17, and will continue their meetings in Washington the following week.

Currently, aviation officials warn that electronic devices using lithium-ion batteries should be kept in the passenger cabin so crew can quickly put out a fire on board.

Details of a specific threat have not been made public.

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In other words, the laptop ban isn't dead just yet.

According to some experts, a bomb in the cabin would be easier to make compared in the cargo.

Russian Federation has not adopted a European laptop flight ban, despite evidently having being briefed by the U.S. pres.

While IATA's recommendations were intended specifically to forestall any expansion of the current ban, they are also clearly intended as an alternative to the existing USA and United Kingdom restrictions.

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