UK Follows US in Banning Laptops in Planes From Muslim Majority Countries

The UK has followed the US in banning electrical devices on flights from six Muslim majority countries in the Middle East and North Africa. The ban applies to tablets, e-readers, DVD players and some large phones.

Mobile phones are exempt from the US ban, which covers flights from 10 airports in seven Muslim majority countries:

  • Queen Alia International, Amman, Jordan
  • Cairo International Airport, Egypt
  • Ataturk Airport, Istanbul, Turkey
  • King Abdulaziz International, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
  • King Khalid International, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
  • Kuwait International Airport
  • Mohammed V International, Casablanca, Morocco
  • Hamad International, Doha, Qatar
  • Dubai International, United Arab Emirates
  • Abu Dhabi International, United Arab Emirates

Ten airlines are affected by the US ban: Royal Jordanian, Egypt Air, Turkish Airlines, Saudi Arabian Airlines, Kuwait Airways, Royal Air Maroc, Qatar Airways, Emirates and Etihad Airways.

A spokesman for the Prime Minister confirmed that the British ban is coordinated with the US ban, saying that UK has been "in close touch" with the US to "fully understand their position”.

The spokesman also said:

“The safety and security of the travelling public is our highest priority. That is why we keep our aviation security under constant review and put in place measures we believe are necessary, effective and proportionate".

Under the UK’s measure, all direct flights from six Muslim majority nations are affected- Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia.

A failed attempt to bomb a plane over Somalia last year has been cited as reason for the ban, and the downing of a Russian plane over Egypt in 2015 have been cited by the US government.

This will affect 8 UK airlines and 6 foreign airlines. The airlines have been given 96 hours to adhere to the new requirements, and are in the process of contacting passengers.