EU nations divided on use of airport body scanners

EU nations divided on use of airport body scanners

In this Dec. 28, 2009 file photo, an employee of Schiphol stands inside a body scanner during a demonstration at a press briefing at Schiphol airport, Netherlands

Italy on Thursday joined the United States, Britain and the Netherlands as nations who have announced plans to install the scanners following a Nigerian man's reported attempt to blow up a US airliner flying from Amsterdam to Detroit on Christmas Day.

Washington is seeking enhanced security measures on all trans-Atlantic flights heading for the United States. That's a huge task, however, since European airports carry thousands of passengers on over 800 flights a day across the lucrative North Atlantic route.

But as EU aviation security experts met today on the subject of scanners, Belgium's secretary of state for transport, Etiennne Schouppe, described such enhanced measures as "excessive," saying security requirements at European airports are already "strict enough."
Spain too has expressed skepticism about the need for body scanners, and the German and French governments remain uncommitted.

German Interior Ministry spokesman Stefan Paris said EU rules on flight safety need to be changed first before scanners can be used. (AP)

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