ICAO adopts new safety, security measures at summit
ICAO Middle Eastern Member States took a series of bold steps towards improving their cooperation and partnership on civil aviation safety and security objectives as the Global Aviation Ministerial Summit in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, came to its successful conclusion on Friday.
Organized with ICAO’s support by the General Authority of Civil Aviation of Saudi Arabia, and featuring a high-level address by ICAO Council President Dr. Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu, the Summit was attended by 104 officials representing 54 countries from the Middle East, Africa and other regions.
Its goal was to spur greater regional and global cooperation and alignment on air transport objectives, and among other outcomes it led to the new Riyadh Declaration on Aviation Security and Facilitation in the Arab Civil Aviation Commission (ACAC) and ICAO Middle East (MID) Regions, reaffirming States’ need to enhance regional development and integration initiatives for aviation security while seeking new efficiencies for collaborative information sharing and security and facilitation training.
“Recent terrorist incidents at airport facilities in Istanbul and Brussels have introduced new and important landside security concerns, helping to underscore the need for this Declaration at this time,” commented Council President Aliu.
“ICAO has begun building on the tremendous success of our Global Plans for safety and air navigation by developing a new Global Aviation Security Plan (GASeP), which we expect to be endorsed by our upcoming 39th Assembly and which will bring important global targets and alignment to all regional and national security planning.”
In the aviation safety domain, and stressing the productive cooperative arrangements already in place between ICAO and the Arab Civil Aviation Commission (ACAC), Council President Aliu further highlighted the need for rapid agreement on a new Middle East/North African Regional Safety Oversight Organization (MENA RSOO).
“The Regional Safety Oversight approach is fundamentally about pooling resources for shared benefit,” Dr. Aliu remarked. “Here in the Middle East it would assist many States with meeting the targets established under the ICAO Global Aviation Safety Plan (GASP), as well as associated MID Regional Aviation Safety Group (RASG) objectives.”
Dr. Aliu reiterated that ICAO would support States as they moved forward with all of their regional and national targets, in particular through the organization’s No Country Left Behind initiative and the ICAO Regional Office in Cairo.