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UK official fends off critics over Heathrow waits

Britain Oly London 20_Frie.jpg

May 1, 2012: Britain's Immigration Minister Damian Green, left, talks to UK Border Agency Immigration officer Shafait Ali during a visit to Terminal 3 of Heathrow Airport, London. Green says that the government is taking action to address long waits at airport immigration lines amid further criticism from an airline executive. (AP)

Britain's immigration minister Damian Green says the government is taking action to address long waits at airport immigration lines amid further criticism from an airline executive.

Green told BBC radio Tuesday that "of course there is a problem" and said "significant steps" would be taken.

Green has said that Britain's border force would deploy extra staff at London's Heathrow Airport amid growing furor over snaking lines at the airport's immigration desks that some passengers claimed stretched for hours.

But Willie Walsh, chief executive of International Consolidated Airlines Group, accuses the government of being "incapable or unwilling" to fix the situation.