Since the 9/11 attacks, airport safety has shifted into high gear — the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was created, and it quickly instituted a multitude of new protocols that passengers must abide before boarding their flights.
According to a report at Yahoo! News, DHS has just upped the ante once again, introducing regulations that mean devices we have regularly used on flights are now prohibited on some flights from Africa and the Middle East into the U.S.
The Homeland Security directive states anything bigger than a cellphone — meaning everything from laptops, tablets, and iPads to cameras, video game players, and whatever else — must be placed in checked luggage:
But fear not: the new ban will not affect those traveling within the country.
According to reports, this new ban targeted ten airlines in eight different countries including Cairo, Egypt; Dubai and Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates; Istanbul; Doha, Qatar; Amman, Jordan; Kuwait City; Casablanca, Morocco; and Jeddah and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
The banned airports are in Amman, Jordan; Cairo; Istanbul; Jeddah and Riyadh in Saudi Arabia; Kuwait City; Casablanca, Morocco; Doha, Qatar; and Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates.
The new policy, introduced by the Trump administration, officially went into effect Tuesday at 3 a.m. and it must be enacted within 96 hours by airlines flying to the United States:
The Department of Homeland Security issued a statement about the new ban, insisting that the sole intent is to prevent terrorism:
“Evaluated intelligence indicates that terrorist groups continue to target commercial aviation, to include smuggling explosive devices in various consumer items.”
The duration of the ban was made clear by the DHS statement. It noted only that it will “remain in place until the threat changes.”
No U.S. based airlines will be affected by the electronics ban since none of them travel from the airports in question.