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Police against body scanners as airport security debate reignites

DDP/The Local · 28 Dec 2009, 17:20

Published: 28 Dec 2009 17:20 GMT+01:00

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National GdP chairman Konrad Freiberg told reporters on Monday that while there was always a need for better security technology, the so-called 'naked' scanners, which allow personnel to see through clothing, were an unacceptable compromise.

"The private or intimate sphere of passengers should not be invaded," he said.

But Freiberg also warned the German government against watering down security measures.

"If the security laws are diluted, it will give terrorists the opportunity to strike," he said, commenting on the Free Democratic Party's (FDP) intention to limit police powers for keeping an information database. "No-one should believe that Islamist terror has become less dangerous."

Freiberg also argued that while the technology for detecting potential bomb threats at airports needed to be constantly updated, it was just as important that there was constant pressure on suspected terrorist cells. "A potential terrorist should not be allowed to get as close to execution as in the recent case," he said.

Both Düsseldorf and Cologne-Bonn airports stepped up security on Monday, in response to the attempted bombing of a Delta flight from Amsterdam to Detroit on Christmas Day. "We have tightened our already strict security checks on flights to the US," a police spokesman said.

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Body searches are now to take place on all passengers, not just randomly selected ones, and people travelling to the US are advised to expect longer waits. But there would be no more policeman in airports than normal, the spokesman added.

DDP/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

19:28 December 28, 2009 by pepsionice
.....the private or intimate sphere of passengers should not be invaded

I am puzzled by his statement here. If you compare police methods of today against police methods of the 1920s....we have exceeded the German acceptance level by 300 percent. The same logic ought to work when they run the blitz camera on speeders....the camera is capturing my most intimate moment while driving.

I'd bring these guys in and dictate the order.....accept it or retire. For any passenger who has a problem...go down to the nearest ship port and board a boat to the location you wish to travel or just drive there. These characters aren't joking around, and the greatest thrill on their mind is to kill you, your family and any friend of yours. They have zero compassion....and they really care about intimate self or your personal requirements.
20:09 December 28, 2009 by Der Grenadier aus Aachen
Yeah. Thing is, if we surrender our last bits of privacy, we might as well go ahead and live under a Caliphate. Security is not a substitute for freedom. I'd rather be dead than surrender my personal liberties and privacies. That's not a life worth living.
21:20 December 28, 2009 by tweetberlin
I think I would prefer a non-invasive body scan, as opposed to some Gorilla running his sweaty palms up and down my inside thighs! Who cares if they see you wearing your Grandad's Y fronts!
00:17 December 29, 2009 by Fredfeldman
These people ARE looking to kill you and you'll have absolutely all the privacy you want in your coffin if you're a victim. Funny thing is the government isn't doing all it can to reign in the terrorists despite all the rhetoric. Seems that two folks involved in this lastest Al Queda escapade were recently released from Guantanamo Bay detention camp. So its apparent that Obama's administration is more interested in playing politics than keeping us safe.
02:41 December 29, 2009 by cleavage
With the new rules that you are not to move for the last hour of the flight, it shows that the police can NOT safe guard our lives and that chemicals CAN be brought on board. Why else would we not be allowed to move for the last hour. I also fail to understand why that "last hour" is so special.

If they don't come up with something more than just not moving around for the last hour, we really have to say that air travel is like russian roulette. Personally I'd like the full body scan if it means air travel is safer. I don't have a problem with us getting into coveralls and leaving our clothes where we came from if it makes us safer. No baggage and cover alls. No problem with me.

Let me say this one more time, They've admitted that they can NOT detect the explosives used in this last attact by the measures they've put in place if you can call them that.
07:22 December 29, 2009 by kyhoods
I view it with the analogies of doctor-patient and security-consumer in mind. They are both trying to save our lives, if that involves seeing me naked so be it.
08:34 December 29, 2009 by freechoice
wasn't the full body scanners installed in Amsterdam Schipol?
08:44 December 29, 2009 by Meringer
It is my understanding that the security manning the scanners are at a seperate location and cannot, in person, see the people being scanned and the security seeing the people in person do not see the scans. So I do not object to being scanned. No one can point at another person and laugh about what they look like under their clothing or whatever, so in that regard, your privacy is still intact. The security will just be seeing anonymous image. If something is spotted, then the person will be checked by the security at the post.
10:37 December 29, 2009 by elboertjie
Who's to say that this so-called 'terrorist attack' on the plane was not a staged event?

There are already loads of evidence pointing that this person has done LESS to be a passenger than a normal passenger and MORE pointing that it was a suicide that was supposed to be documented.

Travelling from Nigeria to the USA without a passport? Sounds like another false-flag attack and now the USA will probably wish to invade Yemen.
11:41 December 29, 2009 by freechoice
How can it be?

The plot is crap, Hollywood can do better than that!! LOL!
13:55 December 29, 2009 by cleavage
I have to ask, WHY are lighters or matches allowed on planes at all?

There is no reason for anyone to have a fire making device on a plane period.

BAN the fire and at least that solves some of the problems.

Who cares if someone sees us naked? It's not that big of a deal.
23:42 December 29, 2009 by wxman
These X-ray images are not really invasive, nor are they explicit. Still, is this necessary?
01:23 December 30, 2009 by Fredfeldman
Is this necessary?! God forbid someone you know goes down in flames as a result of not employing every security technique available and you might discover an answer to your question.
02:48 December 30, 2009 by ColoSlim
Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

~Benjamin Franklin

To those who want to give it all away for everyone else, go find a nice place like North Korea to live.
17:20 December 30, 2009 by dcgi
I have to laugh at some of these comments, a lot of people seem to think this means we're going to have a "telescreen" in every home.

This isn't 1984, so take a few moments to breathe... it's just a better non-invasive pat-down, if you think some airport security guy is going to be getting jollies off of some black and white MRI type image I think you've a screw loose.

So if you can think of a better way of detecting a guy who say hides a plastic shank blade up his bum going through security then we're all ears.
03:37 December 31, 2009 by 1FCK_1FCK
Body scanners are the only thing that are going to make air travel even remotely tolerable. As it is, at least in the US, even a short flight requires you give up 7-8 hours of your day. I wish they'd allow foreign airlines to compete in the US for domestic flights so our domestic airlines would go out of business. They take a problem - security - and turn it into a logistical nightmare.
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