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Belgium to Step Up Brussels Airport Security Based on Israeli Model

 

After Islamist suicide bombers killed 16 people and injured over 150 in the departure hall of Brussels Airport on March 22, the Belgian government realized it had to ramp up airport security. Deputy Prime Minister and Security Minister Jan Jambon traveled to Israel this summer to view the security systems in place at Ben Gurion Airport outside Tel Aviv.

The first circle of protection is at a checkpoint where cars are stopped, cameras read license plates, and heavily armed guards ask drivers pointed questions. People deemed suspicious are pulled over for further questioning and full searches. Non-intrusive monitoring continues all the way to the terminal as well as inside.

The temporary tents outside Brussels airport that were used for passenger checks in the wake of the bomb attacks were removed and now police officers newly trained in behavioral detection stand guard at entranceways, looking for signs of suspicious conduct among arriving travelers.

Facial recognition technologies are part of the new security system in Brussels. The number of cameras at the airport has been increased to 1,250, and include cameras scanning car number plates as they enter the airport perimeter. Jambon also plans to set up checkpoints at access roads to the airport as well as in other airports throughout Belgium.

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