UK airports to get body scanners next week

The UK is to institute body scanners at its airports from next week, Gordon Brown has announced.The prime minister told Parliament on Wednesday that, in the wake of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab's alleged attempt to blow up Northwest Airlines Flight 253 above Detroit on Christmas Day, a no-fly list would also be instituted.

The UK is to institute body scanners at its airports from next week, Gordon Brown has announced.

The prime minister told Parliament on Wednesday that, in the wake of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab's alleged attempt to blow up Northwest Airlines Flight 253 above Detroit on Christmas Day, a no-fly list would also be instituted.

The alleged 'pants bomber' was subdued by fellow passengers after an explosive device set his trousers on fire during the flight.

Brown said the scanner technology that will be instituted is the "best we have today", and urged other countries to take similar measures to increase airport security.

The government has previously said it wants body scanners at airports, but had not previously said when this would be instituted. The devices have come under fire from some privacy campaigners, as they effectively allow passengers to be viewed naked by security personnel.

Brown also announced on Wednesday that direct flights between the UK and Yemen — where Abdulmutallab said he had been given the bomb — have been suspended.