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British Airways Cancels London-Washington Flight

Michael Bowman

Another international flight to the United States has been cancelled amid continued security worries.

British Airways scrubbed one of three daily flights from London to the Washington area Thursday, the latest in a series of cancellations of international flights bound for the United States.

British Airways spokesman John Lamphill, "The British government directed British Airways to cancel flight 223. We can only assume that is due to security reasons, but we have no other explanation."

Wednesday, another British Airways flight was detained several hours upon arrival at Washington's Dulles Airport while U.S. authorities questioned a number of passengers and conducted extra baggage screening. All passengers were eventually allowed to disembark.

FBI spokeswoman Debbie Wierman said authorities acted on "routine interest" rather than a specific threat or allegation.

"There were names listed on the manifest of the plane that matched [the names of] persons that U.S. law enforcement officials were interested in interviewing. It was routine interest on our part, and, when it was all said and done, we had no concerns or worries."

But not everyone sees the stepped-up security effort as benign. One passenger from the delayed British Airways flight vented his displeasure. "This was detention without due process, as far as I am concerned. I am an American citizen and I expect to be treated as such in my own country."

Last week, Air France canceled a half-dozen flights between Paris and Los Angeles. Wednesday, an
AeroMexico flight bound for the United States was also scrubbed after U.S. officials raised security concerns with their Mexican counterparts.

The Associated Press quotes a spokesman for Mexico's government as complaining that U.S. officials did not share specific information about what provoked their concerns.

Two weeks ago, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security raised the nation's alert status to "orange" - the second highest level on a five color-coded scale. Earlier this week Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge announced new airline security measures, including an initiative to have sky marshals aboard certain flights operated by foreign carriers.

 

注释:

scrub [skrQb] v. 取消

bound for  开往

assume [E5sju:m] vt. 假定

be due to  由于

detain [di5tein] v. 留住,拘留

Washington's Dulles Airport  华盛顿杜勒斯机场

conduct [5kCndQkt] v. 实施

disembark [5disim5bB:k] v. 登机

FBI abbr. Federal Bureau of Investigation (美国)联邦调查局

routine interest   例行公事

allegation [7Ali5^eiFEn] n. 断言,指控

manifest [5mAnifest] n. 旅客名单

stepped-up   增加的,加强的

benign [bi5nain] adj. 仁慈的, 良好的

vent [vent] v. 发泄

detention [di5tenFEn] n. 滞留,拘留

due [dju:] adj. 正当的,适当的

AeroMexico   墨西哥航空公司

counterpart [5kauntEpB:t] 对手,相对物

provoke [prE5vEuk] vt. 引起,激发

Department of Homeland Security  国土安全部

color-coded  用颜色分类的

initiative [i5niFiEtiv] n. 首创

sky marshal  空中警官