US bans electronic devices on flights from 8 Muslim countries

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SHAFAQNA – A former Trump administration official has called it “a Muslim ban by a thousand cuts.” And another slice was taken this morning.

Anyone flying on direct flights to the United States from ten airports in predominantly Muslim countries will no longer be able to take any electronic device larger than a smartphone into the cabin. The prohibition, instituted by the US Department of Homeland Security, goes into effect today, though news of the possible electronics ban was leaked yesterday.

The indefinite ban on electronic devices includes anything larger than a smartphone, including laptops, handheld games, and cameras, as well as tablets of any kind, including iPads, Kindles, and Microsoft Surface.

One of the most curious aspects of the electronics ban is that it affects flights from Abu Dhabi on an airline where it’s possible to obtain pre-clearance and go through US Customs before you even board the flight. This alone has given aviations experts the impression that this new ban may be another rushed program implemented by Trump’s troll-faced band of amateurs without any logic or critical thinking applied.

There has been tremendous confusion around the electronics ban, after Royal Jordanian sent out a now-deleted tweet yesterday about the new rules on flights to the US. As of Tuesday morning, some of the airlines affected by the ban, such as Saudi Airlines, had sent out messages to passengers about prohibited items. While officials at other airlines had reportedly said that they had not yet been notified of any changes by the US Department of Homeland Security.

The direct flights to the US where electronic devices will be banned originate from the following airports:

  • Queen Alia International, Amman, Jordan
  • Cairo International, Egypt
  • Ataturk International, Istanbul, Turkey
  • King Abdulaziz, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
  • King Khalid International, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
  • Kuwait International, Farwaniya, Kuwait
  • Mohammed V International, Casablanca, Morocco
  • Doha International, Qatar
  • Dubai International, United Arab Emirates
  • Abu Dhabi International, United Arab Emirates

The airlines that will be affected by the ban are Emirates Airline, Qatar Airways, Etihad Airways, Turkish Airlines, Royal Jordanian, Saudi Arabian Airlines, Royal Air Maroc and Kuwait Airways. If any of the airlines refuse to comply, and so far there has been no indication that they will, they could be prohibited from flying to the United States.

The Trump regime hasn’t given any indication that there is a specific threat coming from any of these ten airports, but spoke about security in general terms. Notably, none of the eight countries affected by the electronics ban are included in the racist travel and refugee Muslim ban that was introduced and then revised in the past two months.

The Muslim electronics ban affects flights from Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia. Tunisia and Lebanon are not on the US list, and the UK list doesn’t include the UAE, Kuwait, Qatar, and Morocco, which are all on the US list.

According to the BBC, the six UK airlines that will be impacted are:

  • British Airways
  • EasyJet
  • Jet2.com
  • Monarch
  • Thomas Cook
  • Thomson

And the eight foreign airlines subject to the ban are:

  • Turkish Airlines
  • Pegasus Airways
  • Atlas-Global Airlines
  • Middle East Airlines
  • Egyptair
  • Royal Jordanian
  • Tunis Air
  • Saudia

Not much is making sense at this point, but I guess expecting anything to make sense is a bit too much to ask of 2017.

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