by Allison Lampert - Reuters
The United States and Europe are divided over United Nations efforts to expand employee screening at airports, following broader calls to harden airports against threats from their own workers, four sources familiar with the matter said.
The United States, backed by Canada and Australia, opposes the new global standards, which if approved would have all workers screened when entering airports’ restricted areas, while Europe supports the change, said the sources who were not authorized to discuss the private talks.
Washington argues the proposal could increase passenger congestion and costs, and is not demonstrably more effective than its current practice of random screening, watch list vetting and background checks, two of the sources said.
The previously unreported debate comes weeks before global aviation security experts will meet at the UN’s International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) in Montreal.