Homeland Security finds that security at Port Au Prince Airport does not meet international standards

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National Press Release
Wednesday, December 22, 2004

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Homeland Security today announced that the Port Au Prince Airport in Haiti does not meet international security standards, and the department is taking action to warn travelers of this security deficiency. Based on an assessment by a team of security experts from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), Homeland Security has determined that the airport does not currently maintain security measures consistent with the standards established by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

In view of this finding, Homeland Security has directed air carriers issuing tickets for travel between the United States and Port Au Prince to notify ticket purchasers of this determination. Homeland Security also directed that the determination be displayed prominently at all U.S. airports and published in the Federal Register. The order is effective immediately.

TSA representatives have been in Haiti to help airport authorities bring Port Au Prince Airport up to international standards. The TSA representatives will remain in Haiti to assist local authorities with correcting security deficiencies at the airport as quickly as possible.

U.S. and foreign air carriers that fly directly between the United States and Port Au Prince are temporarily providing additional security measures that counter the deficiencies identified at the airport. If proper precautions are carefully observed by both the air carriers and the airport, Homeland Security believes that it is possible to safely conduct air service operations to and from Port Au Prince Airport.

Under Title 49 of the U.S. Code, Section 44907, Homeland Security assesses security at foreign airports with direct service to the United States. If the Secretary of Homeland Security determines that security at an airport is not effective, he is required to notify the foreign government of the findings and recommend corrective action. Based on the TSA review, the Secretary of Homeland Security has so notified the Government of Haiti. When corrective actions have been taken, TSA will reassess security measures at the airport.