Several European officials questioned American requirements for airport security October 27, a day after the chairman of British Airways criticized Britain for bowing too quickly to Washington’s demands. The chairman said at a conference that Britain should not “kowtow to the Americans every time they wanted something done” with aviation security procedures. Especially irritating was the requirement that passengers take off their shoes and remove their laptops from their luggage during security checks. The practice should be abandoned, he said. He also criticized Washington for not imposing certain safety restrictions on domestic flights that it requires for international flights to and from the United States. Executives from other carriers and airports echoed the criticisms from British Airways. Some airlines have repeatedly called for more sophisticated scanning machines to replace procedural safety measures like requiring passengers to pack liquids separately. Virgin Atlantic said that it had pleaded “for many years” for new security procedures that would be “effective but quicker and less intrusive.”

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