Middle East

Qatar Airways removed from US laptop ban list

National carrier joins other Gulf airlines in allowing passengers to carry electronic devices on board to the US.

The US imposed a laptop ban on flights from 10 countries in March [File: Sedat Suna/EPA]

Qatar Airways has joined two other major long-haul carriers in the Gulf in getting off a US laptop ban list.

The airline on Thursday said that with "immediate effect, all personal electronic devices can be carried on board all departures from Hamad International Airport to destinations in the United States."

Hamad International Airport in Doha is the hub of Qatar Airways.

Qatar's national carrier said it met all requirements of the US Department of Homeland Security's new security guidelines.

The airline did not discuss specifics about what it did to appease US officials. 

READ MORE: Emirates, Turkish Airlines say US laptop ban lifted

In March, the United States imposed the ban on flights originating at 10 airports in eight countries - Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and Turkey - to address fears that bombs could be concealed in electronic devices taken aboard aircraft.

Qatar Airways joins Abu Dhabi-based Etihad, Dubai-based Emirates and Istanbul-based Turkish Airlines in getting off the list. 

While the Gulf airlines have not commented on security procedures, Turkish officials said they now use CT scanners to examine passengers' electronics.

There was no immediate comment available from US officials on the lifting of the ban on the named carriers. 

The US laptop ban still applies to nonstop US-bound flights from six airports in Amman, Kuwait City, Cairo, Jeddah, Riyadh and Casablanca.

Saudi Arabian Airlines has said it hopes to be off the ban list "on or before July 19".

Royal Air Maroc also expects the ban to be lifted by July 19, a senior official from the state-owned company said on Thursday.

"Negotiations with the US authorities are under way and we expect the ban to end by July 19 at the latest," the official said.

 

Source: News agencies