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Passion Islam I September 2008 LOCAL & NATIONAL NEWS I 7
UK launches face-scanner
trials at Manchester airport
British Home Secretary Jacqui Smith of Britain’s triple ring of security, alongside
Tuesday officially launched a trial of fingerprint visas for three-quarters of the
facial recognition technology aimed to world’s population, and the roll-out of ID
free Border Agency staff to concentrate cards for foreign nationals locking people
on higher risk flights and passengers to one identity,” the minister said.
entering and leaving the UK. When the government launched its
The new equipment, being tested at e-Borders program last year, a target
Manchester airport in north west England, was originally set for 95 percent of all
automatically scans passport photos and passengers to be counted in and out of
matches them to the biometric records the UK by 2010.
held by the authorities. By prioritizing countries that are
The trial is being used only on people believed to pose the greatest risk, the
from the UK and EU who are over 18 and Home Office said that the UK Border
hold a new-style chipped passport, but Agency can now commit to 99 percent of
if successful, the system is expected to all foreign national passengers outside of
be rolled-out at other airports across the the EEA being monitored in and out of the
country. UK within two years.
“The UK has one of the toughest The £1.2 billion e-Borders system
borders in the world and we are determined was said to have already screened 50
to ensure it stays that way,” Smith said at million passengers travelling to Britain,
the launch, aimed to improve the speed leading to more than 2,000 arrests,
at which travellers pass through border including murderers, drug dealers and
control, while adding to security. sex offenders.
She also announced that over 99 The strategy also includes plans for
percent of foreign nationals from outside ‘no fly’ lists with passengers flagged up
the European Economic Area (EEA) will by e-Borders subsequently barred from
be tracked in and out of Britain by 2010, flying with airlines into the UK. at juxtaposed controls since the beginning
through targeting of higher risk countries. The agency has already barred of 2008 and seized pnds 83 million worth
“These checks make up just one part almost 6,000 people from entering Britain of illegal drugs.
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UK with diabetes, and people can call Jenne Dixit at Diabetes
of South Asian origin are up UK on 020 7424 1110 or e-mail
Name:___________________________________________ to four times more likely to
develop Type 2 diabetes. Diabetes UK has a range
Address:_________________________________________ Ramadhan calendar 2008, of information available for
We hope that by distributing the Muslim community about
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130 mosques across the UK Ramadan on our website.
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Date:____________________ Office use: during Ramadhan, when it can who can speak a variety of
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It is important that the 2960.
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