US security chief voices screening doubts

US secretary of homeland security, Janet Napolitano (right), has suggested 100 per cent screening of ocean cargo may be scrapped raising hopes for air cargo’s own draconian security requirements in the US.

Napolitano said that Congress was now willing to reconsider its previous mandate requiring total screening of cargo entering the US by 2014 and is now considering ‘ a more layered approach’.

“I think what we have learnt over time is that there are many different ways to achieve a security objective,” she said. “You have to have multiple layers that operate effectively.”

That means data analysis, cooperation with other countries’ intelligence and cargo agencies, risk analysis and physical inspections.

However, Napolitano’s doubts about the new security regulations do not mean they are reflective of the Obama administration as a whole and with air security being an especially sensitive topic in the US it is still doubtful there will be any sudden turnaround in policy. 

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