ICAO Council condemns violation of territorial integrity and airspace of Ukraine

​The ICAO Council is a permanent diplomatic body of the Organization responsible to the ICAO Assembly. It is comprised of 36 ICAO Member States, elected by the ICAO Assembly for a three-year term.

MONTRÉAL, 25 February 2022 –  The 36 States composing the ICAO Council discussed today the situation unfolding in Ukraine, during a scheduled meeting of the ICAO Governing Body’s 225th Session. 

A representative of Ukraine also participated in the Council meeting on the basis of the State’s stake in the situation. 

The topic was considered by the Council on the basis of an oral statement delivered by the President of the Council, Salvatore Sciacchitano, together with a presentation from ICAO Secretary General, Juan Carlos Salazar, which updated Representatives on the operational aviation context. 

Council States condemned the violation of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of a United Nations Member State, including its airspace, as being inconsistent with the principles of the Charter of the United Nations and Article 1 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation (Chicago Convention). 

The Council also expressed grave concerns on the latest developments in Ukraine, and solidarity with its people, in direct alignment with the sentiments expressed by the United Nations Secretary General in his statements to the UN General Assembly on 23 and 24 February 2022.


States representatives also recalled the preamble to the Convention on International Civil Aviation (Chicago Convention), which identifies the need to avoid friction and instead promote cooperation and friendship among nations and peoples, on which the peace of the world depends. 

The Council further underscored the paramount importance of preserving the safety and security of international civil aviation and the related obligations of Member States, and in this context, urged the Russian Federation to cease its unlawful activities to ensure the safety and security of civil aviation in all affected areas, and to respect its obligations under the Chicago Convention as well as other relevant international air law treaties. It called upon all concerned parties to seek to resolve the crisis through peaceful dialogue and diplomatic channels. 

The Council also recalled with deep sorrow the human suffering that was caused as a result of the downing of flight MH17 in the east of Ukraine on 17 July 2014, and underlined that such a tragedy should never happen again. 

In the same context the Council reconfirmed its support to the “Safer Skies” initiative led by Canada relating to improving international efforts to safeguard civilian flight operations over or in the vicinity of conflict zones. 

The Council requested the Secretariat to continue to monitor the situation in Ukraine and provide support to the States involved.

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A specialized agency of the United Nations, ICAO was created by governments in 1944 to support their diplomacy on international air transport matters. Since that time, countries have adopted over 12,000 standards and practices through ICAO which help to align their national regulations relevant to aviation safety, security, efficiency, capacity and environmental protection, enabling a truly global network to be realized. ICAO forums also provide opportunities for advice and advocacy to be shared with government decision-makers by industry groups, civil society NGOs, and other officially-recognized air transport stakeholders.

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