Brussels attacks: Security scanners could be installed outside airport entrances
In the aftermath of the deadly terrorist attacks in Brussels, an emergency meeting of experts is believed to have been called for 31 March to discuss the possibility of installing security scanners at airport entrances. According to EU sources, the case for increased security outside of airport arrival halls is “definitely” on the meeting agenda.
Members from the European Aviation Safety Agency are set to gather together with officials from the European Commission’s transport department along with representatives from several European countries. No specific agenda has been revealed yet, but Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc said that the European Commission will host a meeting of aviation security experts from across 28 EU states.
A second meeting of land transport security experts will also be held on April 11 to discuss ways of strengthening security. While extending the security perimeter at airpots should not be a difficult measure, some sources claim the increased cost for airports could be an issue.
Four days after the arrest of Europe’s most wanted man, Salah Abdeslam, Brussels was targeted by multiple explosions that claimed at least 31 lives and left over 200 injured. Islamic State (Isis) has claimed responsibility for the attacks at the Zaventem airport and a metro station in Brussels. Since there are no security checks before check-in, the attackers were able to by-pass security measures.
“Security is a national prerogative,” a European Commission official said. “The Commission will not impose on a small airport in Finland the same security measures that may be required for major hubs such as Brussels or Paris.”
The official further confirmed that any decision to install security scanners at airport entrances will have to be finally approved by the national authorities. Meanwhile, some remained sceptical about adding security scanners at airport entrances. “[It] could be disruptive and actually create new security vulnerabilities,” said ACI Europe, the trade association of European airports.