HALIFAX, Nova Scotia (AP) -- Canada is developing a no-fly list in an effort to prevent terrorist attacks and make air travel safer, the federal transport minister announced Friday.
The program, called Passenger Protect, will identify people who pose ''an immediate threat to aviation security'' and will work with airlines to stop suspects from flying, Transport Minister Jean Lapierre told reporters in Halifax, the provincial capital of Nova Scotia.
''This list is going to be revised regularly, and it's not going to be published all over the place,'' said Lapierre, adding that the list would be ready by 2006 and shared with all airlines, sea ports and border crossings.
''Obviously, there are people out there who are full of bad intentions,'' Lapierre said. ''If anybody tries to buy a ticket under those names, well then, they will never get on an airplane.''
The U.S. has operated a no-fly list for a few years, following the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington. The list could help satisfy American demands that Canadian airlines provide passenger lists for all flights that go through American airspace.
Washington has been pressuring Ottawa to take a greater role in increasing North American security, particularly along the 4,000-mile (6,500-kilometer) border with the United States.
Lapierre also said he plans to meet with key players in the ground transportation system to discuss security in light of the recent subway attacks in London.
Opposition Leader Stephen Harper said he saw little new in the transportation minister's announcements.
''We've had lots of security announcements from this government and very little action,'' said Harper, leader of the Conservative Party. ''This is part of a pattern of phony announcements. I'll believe it when I see it.''
The Candadian transport minister is fighting to keep Washington from getting Canadian passenger lists for domestic flights that stray into U.S. airspace.
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