Tunisia Summons UK Ambassador Over New Ban on Electronics on Flights

Tunisia has summoned the British ambassador over the recent UK carry-on electronics ban on flights from Tunisia.
Tunisia has summoned the British ambassador over the decision of the United Kingdom to prohibit passengers on flights from Tunisia from having some electronics in their carry-on, Tunisia’s Foreign Ministry has announced.

“Tunisia is surprised by this decision, which was taken without consultation with the Tunisian authorities or informing them in advance,” the ministry said in a statement.

The ban was ordered Tuesday morning by British Prime Minister Theresa May after a number of meetings on aviation safety. In her view, the measure does not concern a concrete threat but rather a general threat to flights to the United Kingdom from the six countries in question.

According to a statement of the Foreign Affairs Department, Director General responsible for Europe at the Foreign Ministry Mohamed Mezghani expressed Tunisia’s astonishment at seeing the United Kingdom take this decision without informing the Tunisian authorities or to consult with them on this matter.

“This decision is unjustified and does not reflect the reality of the security situation in Tunisia,” he said.

“The security situation in Tunisia has improved considerably, thanks to the efforts made by security and military apparatus to secure the tourist facilities, sites and routes as well as the land, sea and air crossings” , he added.

In its report for the year 2016, the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) classified Tunisian airports as the most secure airports in the world, he said, noting that Tunisian airports apply the same security measures in force at London Heathrow International Airport.

Earlier this week, the United States announced a ban on electronic devices larger than a cellphone in carry-on on direct flights to the United States from a number of states, including Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Morocco, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The United Kingdom has introduced a similar restriction on flights from Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Turkey.

The prohibited electronic devices are allowed in checked-in luggage only.

Both the United States and the United Kingdom explained the new ban by the ongoing international terrorism threat.

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