- Human Rights
- January 16, 2010
- 2 minutes read
Egypt to strip search passengers?
According to unconfirmed reports, the Egyptian government has introduced new strip searches for passengers arriving or departing from Cairo International Airport in a bid to increase security in response to the attempt to blow up an American passenger airline on Christmas Day. It is also unclear whether this will be a uniform procedure or if only certain passengers will be singled out for strip searches.
According to airport sources, luggage of travelers will also be “thoroughly” examined beginning Thursday. Before, most Western citizens had very little supervision and simply handed their passport over to the security officer before exiting the airport without much of a glance, but now it appears the government here is pushing for new, stricter, regulations.
According to recent statistics, some 20 percent of travelers are subjected to strip searches upon departing or leaving Egypt. Airport administration said everyone will have to get in line for pat-downs beginning from Thursday. A large number of both male and female security personnel have been deployed to search passengers, sources at the airport said, adding police dogs will roam around the terminals to detect explosives, although no official would go on record as to how severe the new security measures would be.
One American traveler who arrived on Wednesday said they had received no such security measures and said it was “a walk in the park” to get into the country.
“They had us fill out health cards and all that, but there wasn’t even a real glance at us when we passed the doctor. I was kind of shocked,” said American student Bill Marsh.