MONTRÉAL, 18 October 2011 – States from across Africa agreed in Dakar, Senegal, today, to work together and with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to improve aviation security.
The President of the Regional Conference, Dr. Harold Demuren of Nigeria, praised the development as an important step in enhancing aviation security in Africa and around the world.
“Africa’s recognition of the need for action to address the terrorist threat, whatever form it may take, is truly inspiring because it contributes to a global solution to the global problem,” Dr. Demuren said.
Representatives from 35 African States agreed on a Joint Statement calling the ICAO Declaration* a comprehensive global policy framework for strengthening aviation security through international cooperation. The States pledged to implement all of the Declaration’s elements, while taking into account the regional Abuja Declaration and its Roadmap on Aviation Security adopted by African States in Abuja, Nigeria, in 2010.
The Representatives called on ICAO to work with the African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC) to further develop the African Roadmap in light of the Assembly Declaration. In this regard, they recognized the need to focus on enhancing aviation security through intensified, cooperative efforts to address security deficiencies and strengthen security systems, notably, through sharing of information and best practices.
In addition to national civil aviation authorities, a number of regional organizations participated in the Dakar meeting, including AFCAC, the African Centre for the Study and Research on Terrorism (ACSRT), the East African Community (EAC), the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) and the West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA). Experts from Europe and the United States were also on hand to discuss partnership opportunities that could benefit aviation security.
The Conference was the second in a series of events promoting regional action to implement the ICAO Declaration, and provided an opportunity for States in Africa to address the related challenges and identify solutions. The regional conferences are expected to culminate in a global, high-level security conference in Montréal in September 2012.
* Declaration on Aviation Security adopted unanimously by ICAO’s 37th Assembly in October 2010.