For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
DUBLIN — Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano today visited Dublin Airport to meet with Irish Minister of Transport Noel Dempsey and mark the expansion of preclearance services, beginning January 19, 2011, in Ireland to commercial aircraft departing and passing through Dublin Airport for the United States—enhancing global aviation security by allowing DHS to screen travelers before takeoff through the same process they would undergo upon arrival at a U.S. port of entry to better target and prevent threats while streamlining legitimate travel and trade.
"Our continued partnership with the Irish government is critical to our efforts to enhance international aviation security," said Secretary Napolitano. "Expanding preclearance services at Dublin Airport underscores our commitment to protecting the safety and security of our citizens while streamlining legitimate travel and commerce between our two nations."
In order to meet U.S. screening standards, members of the Dublin Airport security staff have been trained by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) on TSA-approved screening procedures.
DHS currently provides preclearance services at 14 foreign airports in five countries. Passengers or crew members found to be inadmissible to the United States are denied admission prior to boarding U.S.-bound flights—eliminating the need to return inadmissible travelers to their country of departure after they have already arrived in the United States.
In March, preclearance services were expanded for private aircraft departing Shannon Airport for the United States. The expansion of preclearance services in Ireland is part of the Department's ongoing efforts to work with international partners and the International Civil Aviation Organization to bolster global aviation security. Last month, Secretary Napolitano announced that 100 percent of passengers on flights from, within or bound for the United States are now being checked against government watchlists under the TSA's Secure Flight program—fulfilling a key 9/11 Commission recommendation a month ahead of schedule.
Following her visit in Dublin, Secretary Napolitano will continue her international travel to destinations that will be announced in the coming days. More details will be provided when finalized.
For more information, visit www.dhs.gov.