Britain to review cargo screening: minister

31st October 2010, Comments 0 comments

Britain will review how freight is screened following the discovery of two bombs onboard US-bound cargo flights, the home secretary said Sunday, adding that tackling terrorism was a "constant battle".

"We are looking and we will look at screening of freight, we'll be looking at the processes that they use, we'll be talking with the industry about those issues," Home Secretary Theresa May told BBC television.

She refused to say what changes might be introduced, but said: "Obviously from the terrorist point of view they are constantly looking for new ways (to attack). It is a constant battle for us against the terrorists."

Shortly after the discovery of the bombs, which originated in Yemen and were found in airports in Britain and Dubai, Britain banned all freight from Yemen from coming into the country, including in transit.

May said that beyond this, "certainly we have to be looking at our processes of searching and how we detect these devices".

There are concerns that additional screening of cargo flights could cause major disruption to businesses worldwide.

"I'm well aware of the economic aspect of freight transport," she said, adding: "We work very closely with our international partners and with industry, looking at the arrangements that are in place."

On Saturday, Prime Minister David Cameron said the bomb found in Britain, at East Midlands airport in central England, was designed to go off on a plane but it was not clear what was the intended target.

May said that with freight flights, sometimes the routing can change at the last minute and the perpetrators therefore would not know where the parcel was.

© 2010 AFP

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