ICAO has released updated guidance today to help aviation regulators and operators manage their airspace in times of conflict, including the decision on whether or not to allow flights over or near conflict zones.
The guidance was first issued in 2017 as a result of the work undertaken by ICAO after the downing of flight MH17 in 2014. The shooting down of flight PS 752 in 2020 triggered a decision by the following ICAO Assembly, in 2022, to prioritize the review of the existing manual. The update comprises inputs from individuals, States, industry stakeholders and the Safer Skies Initiative Committee.
The Third Edition of the Risk Assessment Manual for Civil Aircraft Operations Over or Near Conflict Zones has now been expanded to encompass advice for States and operators regarding the risks from surface-to-air missiles (SAMs), ballistic missiles, surface-to-surface missiles (SSMs), air-to-air missiles (AAMs), and to provide guidance on conducting conflict zone airspace closures and reassessing post-conflict zone airspace.
New guidelines for harmonization of risk assessments and risk-related communication have also been incorporated in this edition.