US to scrutinize remote-control toys at airports

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WASHINGTON, Oct 2 (Reuters) Airline passengers who pack remote-control toys in their carry-on bags should expect a little more security screening at the airport, the Transportation Security Administration said.

''It appears that terrorists may have an interest to use these remote-control toys as a means to initiate devices used in a terrorist attack,'' agency administrator Kip Hawley said yesterday in an audio posting on the TSA Web site.

He recommended that passengers consider putting the toys in their checked luggage.

The agency said there was no specific threat of an attack, but it cited a July report by US intelligence agencies that said the United States was in a ''heightened threat environment.'' TSA said agency officers had been trained for the possibility that remote-control toys could be used as weapons.

Such toys have been used to trigger improvised explosives in Iraq, the Congressional Research Service has said. They have also been used by US and Iraqi troops, who ram the toys into suspected insurgent bombs to try to set them off.

Reuters MP VP0612

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