Thursday, October 23, 2008
STRASBOURG, France (AP) — European Union lawmakers have voted overwhelmingly to demand more study before the bloc authorizes the introduction of new full body scanners at airports which allow security staff to see through passengers’ clothes.
The European Parliament voted 361 to 16 with 18 abstentions Thursday in favor of a resolution demanding EU authorities carry out a full study of the privacy and health implications of the new technology.
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The new systems allow guards to see an outline of passengers’ bodies beneath their clothes. Supporters say it makes it easier to detect concealed objects such as liquids or plastic weapons not picked up by traditional metal detectors.
It already is being introduced in several U.S. airports and has been tested in other countries around the world, including EU nations such as Britain and the Netherlands.
Civil liberties campaigners have denounced it as a “virtual strip search.”