UAE signs protocol to amend aviation agreement

Protocol expands jurisdiction by recognising competence of state operator over offences on board aircrafts


Fahad Saeed Al Raqbani, the UAE's ambassador to Canada, has signed the Protocol for Amending the Agreement Concerning Offences and Acts Committed on Board Aircrafts approved in Montreal, Canada.

The protocol expands the grounds of jurisdiction by recognising, under certain conditions, the competence of the state of landing and the state operator to exercise jurisdiction over offences and acts on board aircrafts. The establishment of such jurisdiction over offences is mandatory if the criteria set out in the protocol are met. The protocol extends legal recognition and certain protection to in-flight security officers and contains provisions for coordination among states to protect air transportation.

Al Raqbani stressed the necessity of this protocol, saying: "The UAE is one of the supporting countries to the protocol and took part in drafting it through an expert team from the General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA). The UAE is a strong advocate of international aviation security, removing all obstacles before it, and cooperation between the member states in securing air transport."

The signature took place at the International Civil Aviation Organization's (ICAO) headquarters in Montreal, and was attended by ICAO's Secretary General Fanj Liu; Sheikh Sultan bin Saeed Al Nahyan, GCAA's Director General; Saif Mohammed Al Suwaidi, Ayesha Al Hamili, the UAE's Permanent Representative at ICAO's Council; Hamad Al Muhairi, the Assistant Director General for Aviation Security Affairs at GCAA; Mohammad Salem, the UAE Alternate Representative at the ICAO Council; Saeed Al Suwaidi of GCAA DG Office Manager; Mohammed Al Shamsi, Third Secretary at the UAE Embassy in Canada, ICAO's legal affairs director; and the accompanying delegation.

Fanj Liu hailed the UAE's efforts for signing the protocol and the continuous support the UAE has shown for ICAO, and the member states. The General Civil Aviation Authority is the federal authority which manages and regulates the UAE airspace and the aviation sector in order to serve the public in a dynamic and thriving aviation environment.

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