China creating police force to fly on airliners : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Report: China creating police force to fly on airliners

The Associated Press 10/14/01 3:28 PM

BEIJING (AP) -- China is creating a 2,000-member police force to fly aboard its airlines, prompted by terror attacks in the United States, a state newspaper reported Sunday.

The aviation police will replace private security guards who fly on many Chinese carriers, the Beijing Youth Daily said. Citing unidentified sources, it said the new force was being formed by the Civil Aviation Authority of China, the country's airline regulator.

A man who answered the phone at CAAC on Sunday couldn't confirm the report and said no one else was available.

The measure, if confirmed, would be among a series of steps taken by China after terrorists on Sept. 11 hijacked jetliners and crashed them into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

Chinese airline offices in Hong Kong were ordered earlier this month not to sell tickets to passengers from the Middle East and Pakistan. Chinese carriers have canceled their flights to Pakistan and the Middle East.

The Beijing Youth Daily didn't say whether the new air police would carry guns. But it said they would be similar to China's railway police, whose officers travel aboard trains armed with pistols.

Airline guards currently are armed with truncheons and fire axes, according to the Beijing Youth Daily.

China tightened security after the Sept. 11 attacks. Guards seize penknives, scissors and anything else that might be used as a weapon.

Passengers already routinely were required to show identification and luggage was X-rayed under measures imposed after a string of hijackings in the early 1990s.

But hijackings still occur. Last year, a would-be hijacker on a domestic flight was reportedly stabbed to death with his own knife.

-- Martin Thompson (, October 14, 2001

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