Olympic concerned over Heathrow long queues

Olympic concerned over Heathrow long queues

PanARMENIAN.Net - The Home Office's border control agency was under fire on Saturday, April 28 as MPs and passengers voiced frustration about long queues at Heathrow airport three months out from the Olympics, AFP reported.

Huge queues at passport control were reported on Thursday and Friday at Heathrow, the world's busiest international passenger airport, which will be the main gateway for the 2012 Games that get under way on July 27.

Passengers waited for up to an hour on Friday to go through the checks, while there were two-hour queues on Thursday for passport holders from outside the 30-country European Economic Area.

Immigration Minister Damian Green is to be quizzed by the Home Affairs Select Committee on the situation.

"There is a real problem and the problem has emerged over the last few months," committee chairman Keith Vaz said.

"I'm not saying we should abandon checks, but it's a choice for the government - you either look at the way you deal with people when they arrive at Heathrow or you recruit more staff.

"This is not just about the Olympics: this is about what happens before and after, it's about Heathrow as a world-class airport and it's about our reputation and we need to make sure we get it sorted."

BAA, which owns and operates Heathrow, said he recent queues were "unacceptable" and they were taking up the issue with the Home Office.

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