BA plane met by authorities at New York: airline

30th October 2010, Comments 0 comments

US authorities met a British Airways jet from London at New York as a "precautionary measure" amid an international security alert over suspect packages from Yemen, the airline said Saturday.

The move followed the discovery on Friday of packages containing explosive material on two cargo planes in transit to the United States -- one in Dubai and the other at Britain's East Midlands Airport.

A BA spokeswoman confirmed that US officials had met the flight from London to John F. Kennedy airport and said that all passengers on board had disembarked safely.

"We understand that authorities are meeting the aircraft purely as precautionary measure given the current heightened security situation," the spokeswoman told AFP.

"We are cooperating fully with the authorities."

The spokeswoman did not comment on reports that the cargo of the plane was being searched.

President Barack Obama said earlier that the two packages from Yemen addressed to Jewish synagogues in Chicago contained explosive material and were a "credible terrorist threat."

Obama earlier ordered cargo planes at Philadelphia and Newark international airports to be towed to isolation and checked because they were thought to contain further packages from Yemen.

US and Canadian fighter jets were scrambled to accompany an Emirates plane into New York but Emirati authorities later said it was not carrying cargo from Yemen.

© 2010 AFP

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