ICAO refuses to politicize air navigation in Qatar crisis

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The Council of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has issued its decisions regarding Qatar’s complaint about the four counterterrorism countries.

The statement noted that the bureau of the Council had taken note of the contents of Qatar’s complaint as well as the response of the concerned States to it and had heard the General Secretariat’s opinion about the flow of traffic over international waters. The Council recognized the existence of political issues that the States concerned should address in appropriate international platforms away from ICAO.

Commenting on the organization’s decisions, Abdul Hakeem Bin Mohammed Al Tamimi, Chairman of the General Authority of Civil Aviation, said: “These decisions underscore the neutrality of the organization and its commitment to the role for which it was established which is the preservation of the safety of civil aviation throughout the world.”

Al-Tamimi appreciated the abstention of the Organization and its distinguished Council from going into political matters. The members stressed that such matters should be discussed in specialized platforms. In fact, during his speech, the Chairman of the Council of the Organization stated that New York was only an hour away from Montreal, in reference to the headquarters of the United Nations.

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On the other hand, the Council expressed its appreciation to the General Secretariat and the States concerned for the emergency preparation they have undertaken in the Gulf region. The General Secretariat was requested to continue to coordinate with concerned and neighboring States to ensure the speedy implementation of emergency arrangements.

In this regard, Tamimi explained that the members of the Council commended the steps taken by the four countries to open new emergency routes to help the flow of air traffic on the high seas, stressing that emergency corridors are only temporary and established in exceptional cases, at high altitude and when air traffic rises in a limited area. Tamimi emphasized that the Kingdom’s sovereign airspace is still closed to the registered aircraft in Qatar.

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In its resolutions, the Council also welcomed the commitment of the States concerned to continue technical consultations under the patronage of ICAO to ensure the application of optimal technical solutions, and requested the General Secretariat to provide information on a regular basis and to submit an updated report for consideration by the Council at its next session.

The Council also urged all Member States of ICAO to continue to cooperate to enhance the safety, security, efficiency and sustainability of international civil aviation and expressed its appreciation to the five States for their spirit of cooperation during the special session.

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