The Netherlands bans air freight, mail from Yemen

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The Netherlands on Monday suspended cargo and mail flights originating in Yemen as a "precautionary measure" after two US-bound parcel bombs were sent from Sanaa in an alleged Al-Qaeda plot.

"We reached an agreement tonight with airlines and cargo handlers to suspend cargo and mail flights from Yemen to the Netherlands or via the Netherlands to other destinations," Edmond Messchaert, a spokesman for the Dutch National Coordinator for Counterterrorism, told AFP.

"This was done as a precautionary measure in expectation of a European discussion that is bound to take place about this issue," he said.

Messchaert said there were no direct cargo or passenger flights from Yemen to the Netherlands but there was "limited" traffic from Yemen via other airports.

"We expect that the impact on the sector will also be limited," he said.

Britain, Germany, the United States and Canada have already tightened air security measures from Yemen after the parcel bomb plot was uncovered late Thursday.

Two parcels containing explosive materials were discovered on cargo planes in Britain and Dubai. US officials said they were addressed to Chicago synagogues.

© 2010 AFP

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