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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

BA in Talks on Missile Shields

LONDON -- British Airways, Europe's biggest airline, said Friday that it is talking to aircraft manufacturers about high-tech measures to guard against surface-to-air missile attacks on its planes.

"Our security team has been talking to the manufacturers -- Boeing and Airbus -- about anti-missile technology," a BA spokeswoman said.

Israeli airliners are believed to carry anti-missile systems, but most of the more than 12,000 commercial planes flying worldwide have nothing to protect them from being downed by a shoulder-mounted missile.

Analysts say the main obstacle to putting anti-missile systems on commercial aircraft is the cost and that there are limits to how well airliners that fly slow and unarmed can be protected.

An Israeli airliner was targeted last November by two heat-seeking surface-to-air missiles as it left Kenya but managed to narrowly evade them, leading to speculation the Arkia Israel Airlines jet had used decoy flares similar to those used by combat aircraft.