Through its embassy in Manila, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) was said to have made a request to allow them to set up security X-ray machines at Terminal 1 of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) departure area and another machine near the boarding gate exclusively for Saudi Arabian flights.
Airport sources over the weekend said Riyadh’s request was addressed to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and was later forwarded to the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) for its approval.
“The Saudi Arabian government wanted to put up machines at NAIA during their flights from Manila to Saudi Arabia because of a ‘confidential information’ they received that unidentified terrorists who are now in some parts of Asia have [an]alleged plan to bomb Saudi [Arabian] planes,” the sources added.
Putting up security X-ray machines is seen deterring movements of suspected terrorists, the sources said.
The request supposedly was made in connection with an ongoing conflict between Saudi Arabia and Iran.
Riyadh reportedly severed its diplomatic relations with Tehran after an attack on its embassy in the Iranian capital over the kingdom’s execution of a Saudi Arabian religious leader.
It was also reported that hours after the death sentence was carried out, protesters in Shiite majority Iran attacked the Saudi Arabian Embassy in the Tehran.
The incident triggered suspension of all Saudi Arabian flights to and from Iran.
Officials of the MIAA said they are still verifying if the request is “true.”
Jesus Gordon, MIAA assistant general manager for Security and Emergency Services, said he will discuss the matter with the airlines concerned and the authority’s security officials for immediate implementation if necessary.