Fort Lauderdale attack may revive debate over security screening at airport entrances


Friday’s deadly attack at Fort Lauderdale International Airport in Florida is likely to renew a debate about whether to extend security screenings to public areas of airports, including entrances and baggage claim areas. 

The Fort Lauderdale suspect had a gun in his checked bag, investigators said. An additional layer of security at airport entrances could gain new support if officials find that it could have helped detect the weapon.

Russia, where suicide bombers killed 36 people at a Moscow airport in 2011, supports security screenings at airport entrances. But an organization representing airports in the United States and Canada calls that step “inappropriate” and prefers other deterrents, such as patrolling, surveillance and airport terminal design.

After attacks last year at airports in Belgium and Turkey, Russia proposed in a working paper presented to the United Nations civil aviation body that entrances at major airports be equipped with X-ray machines, metal detectors and explosives-screening devices.

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