Thursday, 25 March 2010
British passport holders travelling to the Middle East and North Africa have been warned that their passport details could be captured for improper uses while their passport are out of their control. The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advice was reviewed and reissued on 23 March 2010 with an amendment to the Summary and Passport security section which continues to advise against travel to Gaza including the waters off Gaza.
This time however, the advice was reviewed in light of murders' use of UK passports in "the murder of Mahmud al-Mabhuh in Dubai on 19 January 2010". According to the FCO Travel Summary, UK passport holders should be aware that "[their] passport details could be captured for improper uses while [their] passport is out of [their] control." They are advised to "only hand [their] passport over to third parties including Israeli officials when absolutely necessary." The risk applies in particular to holders of passports without biometric security features.