By Jennifer Glickel and Leela de Kretser
JFK AIRPORT — An Emirates plane was stopped on the taxiway at JFK Thursday and two passengers were removed by federal authorities over concerns that they were on the "no fly" list, the airline and authorities told DNAinfo.
Federal authorities ordered Flight 204 to Dubai back to the gate about noon. The plane was stopped for nearly an hour before being cleared for take-off. Both passengers were then allowed back on the plane.
An Emirates employee told DNAinfo it turned out that a person on board was confused with someone on the "no fly" list.
Calls to the Federal Aviation Administration, Port Authority, Customs and Border Protection and the Department of Homeland Security were not immediately returned.
The blocking of the flight comes just a day after the president of Emirates lashed out at the White House for criticism that it failed to stop self-confessed Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad from boarding a flight Monday night.
"We're not a security agency," Tim Clark told Dow Jones. "For the Obama administration to say that we dropped the ball on this, it's a bit much."
But the president and Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Emirates should have prevented Shahzad, who was on a watch list, from getting on the flight, which was only turned back at the very last minute.