SLUG: 2-281047 UN/Aviation Safety
TITLE=U-N-AVIATION SAFETY (L ONLY)
INTRO: The head of the U-N agency responsible for international aviation safety is calling for a high-level conference on ways to strengthen aircraft security. V-O-A Correspondent Breck Ardery reports from the United Nations.
TEXT: Assad Kotaite, president of the International Civil Aviation Organization, says the use of civilian aircraft as weapons represents the "greatest threat ever" to civil aviation security. He is proposing convening an unprecedented international conference to determine what steps must be taken by airlines around the world to make flying safe.
The idea is under discussion at the Aviation Organization's annual meeting in Montreal, Canada. Mr. Kotaite says immediate measures can include tightened security at all airports and requiring that aircraft cockpit doors remain locked at all times during flight.
U-N spokesman Fred Eckhard said Wednesday Mr. Kotaite is also emphasizing that international cooperation in aviation matters is as vital as other aspects of the fight against terrorism.
The proposed resolution also urges all of the 187 states that participate in the International Civil Aviation Organization to strengthen their cooperation in apprehending and prosecuting those who misuse civil aviation as weapons of destruction.
Various proposals to strengthen civil aviation security will be considered at the two-week meeting of the international group.
The attacks in the United States have shaken aviation officials around the world who realize that all civil aircraft could potentially be terrorist targets. (Signed)
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