LONDON (Aug. 30)
El Al today praised the security measures introduced at Heathrow Airport and other places following the terrorist attack on an airline crew bus two weeks ago. Lee Silverman, EI AI’s London press officer, told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that EI AI was “more than pleased.” Among the steps taken were the transfer of EI AI check-in desks in the airport passenger terminal to a position less exposed than previously. There has also been a striking increase in the number of armed police in the neighborhood.
Protective screens have been erected on balconies near the EI AI section and viewing balconies overlooking runways have been closed to the public for fear they could be used for rocket attacks on aircraft. Desk staffs of Pan Am, TWA and British Airways have also been asking for more protection, and plainclothes members of Britain’s crack special air service are on duty to supplement police and troops.
As further evidence of Britain’s tougher attitude towards Arab terrorist suspects, immigration officials at Heathrow today refused to let four officials of the Palestine Liberation Organization enter the country. The increased security stems from fears of further terrorist action to coincide with the summit at Camp David.
Over the weekend, Dr. David Owen, Foreign Secretary, said that he would ask certain Arab Embassies to cut down the numbers of their staff, not all of whom appeared to be bona fide diplomats. His statement was taken as a warning that unless these countries–believed to be Libya, Syria and Algeria–do so voluntarily, they may face further forcible expulsions of their officials like Britain’s ouster of II Iraqis last month.