European Commission withdraws body scanner proposal

The Eiropean Commission has withdrawn its proposal to introduce body scanners at EU airports as part of a package to combat terrorism.

There has been much concern expressed about the use of these body scanners, which produce a black and white image of the naked body, with regard to the possible violation of the fundamental rights of passengers. The European Commission still believes the scanners to be an effective way of detecting weapons hidden under clothing and may well reintroduce the proposal at a later stage.

The European Parliament has also rejected a proposal by the European Commission to record all data regarding passengers, similar to the system currently in operation in the United States. MEP’s feel that such an initiative could violate the right to privacy and is open to misuse as it would allow security forces unlimited access to passenger data.

Moreover, the MEP’s are not convinced that such a system is actually useful or has been sufficiently proven to be effective in the fight against terrorism.

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