SOCHI, Russia (AP) — Despite warnings that terrorists might try to smuggle explosives into Russia — perhaps in toothpaste tubes — air travelers heading to the Olympic city of Sochi say Russian airport security was surprisingly hassle-free.
One Australian man who flew from Moscow to Sochi today said he had an empty one and a-half-liter water bottle that he was hoping to fill on the plane — but that “no one checked it” or even asked about it. And six Associated Press employees arriving in Moscow or beginning their journey there were able to pass through security without having to remove toothpaste, hand lotion or water bottles from their carry-on luggage.
A Russian Transport Ministry spokeswoman says it’s up to the airports to make sure a temporary ban on traveling with liquids is enforced.
The items people are being allowed to bring with them apparently vary based on where the people are traveling from. One AP journalist who was starting a three-leg trip to Sochi today in Detroit had to leave his toothpaste and deodorant behind after an airline official told him he couldn’t bring those items to Russia in his carry-on luggage.
Security concerns ahead of the Sochi Games were renewed after the U.S. Homeland Security Department warned airlines flying to Russia that terrorists may try to smuggle explosives into the country in toothpaste tubes.