London Heathrow Airport told to stop apologizing over delays

An aerial view of the river Thames in Westminster from a commercial flight approaching Heathrow airport on February 21, 2012 in London, England.

London Heathrow Airport has been chastised by the UK Border Agency for handing out leaflets apologizing for "very long delays" at immigration on the basis that they may inflame anger.

The UK Border Force also instructed BAA to stop people from taking pictures of queues in the arrivals hall after images were posted on Twitter, according to Britain's Daily Telegraph.

People arriving in the UK "deserved a warmer welcome," the Telegraph quoted the leaflet handed out by BAA as saying.

It also explained how travelers can complain to the Home Office about the situation.

Meanwhile, London Mayor Boris Johnson said the delays gave "a terrible impression of the UK" three months before the London Olympics, the Associated Press reported.

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Heathrow, the world's busiest airport, typically handles an average of 190,000 arriving and departing passengers each day.

Passengers flying into the airport at the weekend reported having to wait for up to three hours before clearing passport control, The Guardian wrote

Lawmakers and Heathrow's operator BAA have called for additional border staff after the lengthy queues at passport control in recent days, the AP wrote.

The Daily Telegraph obtained correspondence from Mr Marc Owen, director of the UK Border Agency operations at Heathrow, regarding the leaflets that said:

"The leaflet is not all right with us. It is both inflammatory and likely to increase tensions in arrivals halls especially in the current atmosphere.

"It is inappropriate in that it is not for you to display how to complain on our behalf.

"Please refrain from handing out [the leaflets] or I will escalate [the matter] with ministers who are likely to take a very dim view. I know there are copies in the hall and your troops are ready with them."

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