States forge stronger future for aviation security
Sept. 14, 2012, Montreal - Ministers and senior security officials from 132 Member States of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and 23 international organizations concluded a High-level Conference on Aviation Security (HLCAS) today, agreeing on a number of measures to enhance aviation security worldwide.
September 14, 2012 By Carey Fredericks
Highlighting the importance of a more coordinated global response to evolving terrorist threats and the need to make the provision of aviation security less of a burden for industry and passengers, the Conference endorsed strategies and action based on international cooperation, improved information-sharing and proactive approaches.
"Through improved collaboration, we are far better prepared to anticipate, detect and counter the multiple evolving threats posed by modern terrorism," affirmed Raymond Benjamin, Secretary General of ICAO. "Equally important, by sharing data and best practices more comprehensively and leveraging the latest technological innovations, we can minimize the adverse consequences of security on the air transport industry."
Besides their agreement on the transition to a risk-based, collaborative global framework, Conference delegates agreed to establish processes for identifying and handling high-risk air cargo and protecting supply chains. They will also be implementing tighter measures to address potential threats posed by airport, airline and cargo sector personnel.
"A key message from this Conference has been that we must make aviation security more sustainable," stressed Benjamin. "This means maintaining or augmenting the already robust measures which have protected aircraft and passengers so effectively, but in a streamlined manner that better recognizes the necessary movement of people and goods. Fortunately, technology and risk-based methodologies now point us to that more sustainable future and ICAO, through high-level events such as the one which has just concluded, is helping to define the roadmap that will take us there."
Recognizing the importance of leveraging the latest in innovative technologies and processes, the Conference delegates called on ICAO to convene a dedicated aviation security technology symposium in 2014. They also endorsed a blueprint for monitoring States' compliance with zresources to assist those in need of assistance.
In all, over 700 participants took part in the high-level ICAO event, including government officials and representatives from international organizations. The Conference's recommendations will be formally considered by the ICAO Council later this year.
On the occasion of the High-level Conference, ICAO and the European Union (EU) made a pledge towards closer cooperation in the field of aviation security within the framework of an ICAO-EU Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) that entered into force earlier this year.