News

First steering group meeting

Videoconference, 16 September 2021

More than 30 participants from ECAC Member States, the European Commission, international organisations, and industry and independent organisations joined virtually to discuss the Project’s activities in 2020/2021 and to contribute ideas on the further development of the programme of activities. Ms Natalie Pauwels (European Commission/FPI/Head of Unit for Stability and Peace – Global and Transregional Threats) and Mr Mark Rodmell (ECAC Deputy Executive Secretary and CASE Project Director), as co-chairs, opened the meeting. Both thanked the participants for attending and for their involvement in the CASE II Project. The project team presented the main developments and future planning. Ms Pauwels welcomed the growing interest expressed by many ECAC member states to support the project, underlining its unique position in being driven by the contribution of national experts in delivering the cooperation with partner countries.

First CASE II Project-ACAO workshop

Virtual workshop, 6-8 September 2021
The first workshop of the CASE II Project jointly organised with the Arab Civil Aviation Organization (ACAO) focused on security culture in civil aviation. This virtual event was well attended with multiple representatives from 13 ACAO Member States. Through a series of presentations, participants were introduced to topics including the understanding of security culture, cyber security, the ICAO Year of Security Culture, security culture policy and implementation, and effective security management. They benefited from the experience and knowledge of security culture experts from across ECAC and ACAO states, and industry partners. A breakout session inviting the participants to apply what they had discovered during this three-day virtual workshop was organised to mark its conclusion. The resulting discussion and the feedback received so far from those in attendance has been extremely positive, and more such workshops will be included in the CASE II Project.

25 Partner States benefit from Insider Risk webinars

Virtual webinars, June-July 2021
Given the very high level of demand for participation following an invitation sent to all AFCAC states, the activity was delivered three times from June to July with plans for further delivery in the coming months. One further webinar in the series was delivered in coordination with ACAO. A total of 25 Partner States benefitted from this opportunity nominating up to nine participants. While the webinar provides a good foundation to this area of personnel security for aviation, the goal remains to deliver the activity in-country.

Senegal benefits from the Phase III mission on MANPADS

Dakar, 21-25 June 2021
As part of the CASE II Project, the French Civil Aviation Authority has carried out a specific mission at the Blaise Diagne international airport in Dakar, Senegal, seeking to reduce vulnerabilities related to MANPADS and ground-to-ground small arms). The High Authority of Senegal Airports (HAAS) thus welcomed 16 trainees to its premises, who benefited from theoretical and practical training delivered by three French experts. Carried out in a warm and studious atmosphere, this mission sought to assist Senegal in being more autonomous in its approach to reducing the risk linked to this area of aviation security.

Cyber Security in Civil Aviation Workshop

Virtual workshop, 8-9 June 2021
The CASE II Project and AFCAC joined forces again to share expertise on cyber threats and mitigation measures through a workshop attended by over 210 participants from 41 AFCAC states. The topic of cyber security was selected based on its ever-increasing relevance to the general scope of aviation security. Speakers came from a range of ECAC/EU and AFCAC states and provided a range of perspectives reflecting their various roles. The two-day workshop was divided into five sessions focusing on the following topics: Understanding Cyber Threats, Mitigating Cyber Threats, Cyber Security Experience, The Cyber Threat and System Criticality, and Specific Elements of Cyber Security. During the last day of the workshop, participants were split into 19 “virtual” breakout rooms, enabling small groups to interact and discuss the questions posed to the group. The results were very positive as indicated by participants’ feedback.

Covert and overt testing webinar delivery

Virtual webinar, May-June 2021
Covert and overt testing are important tools which can be used both within aviation organisations for the purpose of quality assurance and quality control, or by the aviation security competent authority for the purposes of compliance and risk management oversight. A total of four webinars have been delivered by the CASE II Aviation Security Manger on this subject. Twenty-two Partner States benefited from two multilateral activities in May 2021, and Liberia and Morocco participated in two separate bilateral activities in June 2021. Each webinar involved 11-15 participants. This activity is currently being translated into French and Portuguese, and we hope to provide this course for the benefit of additional CASE II Partner States before the end of 2021.

AFCAC-ECAC CASE II Workshop on the impact of COVID-19 on aviation security

22 April 2021 The first workshop of the CASE II Project was jointly organised with the African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC) and focused on the implications of COVID-19 for aviation security. This virtual event was attended by 107 registered participants representing 33 Partner States from Africa. Through a series of presentations, the first of two sessions introduced industry representatives from Africa and Europe who provided their perspective of the impact of COVID-19 on aviation security operations. The second session focused on the aviation security response to the pandemic, and provided insight and guidance covering both strategic and operational themes from three European speakers. The workshop was very well received by attendees and more such workshops will be included in the CASE II Project.

Gabon benefits from counter-MANPADS mission

Libreville, 8-19 February 2021
Initially planned for March 2020 under the CASE I Project, the first phase of this activity dedicated to the assessment and mitigation of the MANPADS threat had to be postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Finally, this mission on the mitigation of risks from ground-to-air and ground-to-ground weapons took place in February 2021, delivered by a multi-agency team of French experts led by the Direction Générale de l’Aviation Civile as part of the CASE II Project.

The mission brought together 15 participants from a wide range of Gabonese military, police and civil aviation organisations, each of which are involved in ensuring adequate risk-mitigation in response to the threats.

The attendees showed a high level of commitment to the programme even when schedules had to be amended as a result of the imposition of stricter curfews in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic. These efforts were recognised along with the success of the mission and reflected in the concluding remarks at the closing meeting. The output consists of eight recommendations to the Director General of Civil Aviation.

The meeting included the presence of the advisor to the Minister of Transport, the General Manager of the National Security Council, the Deputy Chief of Staff of the Air Force, the Deputy Head of the Office National de la Sûreté et de la Facilitation des Aéroports du Gabon (ONSFAG), the Director General of the Agence Nationale de l’Aviation Civile (ANAC) Gabon and the First Counsellor of the French Embassy. The presence of these senior representatives and the speeches made underlined efforts made thus far and provided a foundation for sustained progress in conjunction with the continued support of the CASE II Project.

Kick-off activity of counter-MANPADS in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

Kinshasa, 18-29 January 2021
The CASE II Project delivered the first phase of a mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) designed to address the threat resulting from MANPADS and other infantry weapons. The activity was implemented by a multi-agency team of French experts led by the Direction Générale de l’Aviation Civile.

This mission constitutes the first of three phases in the DRC examining the threat from MANPADS and associated risk mitigation options. Eighteen participants from relevant organisations at national and local levels took part ensuring a review that explores the threat from a range of different perspectives. The participants came from the Civil Aviation Authority, the Regie des Voies Aériennes (Airport operator), the National Intelligence Agency, the Republican Guard, the Air Force, the Intelligence Directorate, the National Security Council, the Customs and Excise Office, the Border Police and the Directorate General of Migration.

The participants engaged with the process and contributed with enthusiasm. Activities included theoretical work complemented by practical elements taking place in the field with a particular focus on examining potential attack launch sites.

As the mission was brought to a close, the commitment of the DRC authorities to the subject of the mission was underlined in the speech of the Deputy Director General of the Civil Aviation Authority. The closing meeting also witnessed the French Embassy representatives outline their commitment to continued support for the civil aviation authorities of the DRC. In conclusion, the successful delivery of this first phase has provided a great foundation for future work on this important area of aviation security.

First webinar series on insider threats

Videoconference, December 2020 – February 2021
In view of the global travel restrictions the first of a series of four webinars delivered in coordination with the Arab Civil Aviation Organization (ACAO). The webinars focused on insider threats and security culture and were presented by a leader in the field of personnel security with an extensive career working in the UK government as a subject matter expert.

A total of 13 participants from Morocco (9) and Tunisia (4) have been nominated by ACAO to benefit from this activity. The audience included participants from a range of roles and a number of senior officials with aviation security responsibilities from both countries.

The introductory session took place on 17 December 2020 and provided a broad overview of the risks posed by the insider threat with specific attention paid to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on this important matter. Follow-up presentations examined other key security issues in the context of the insider threat: the importance of effective risk assessment was highlighted in a webinar delivered on 13 January 2021 and the third session (3 February 2021) examined the influence of security culture on the mitigation of insider threat.

Each of the sessions had a duration of 90 to 120 minutes and provided scope for participants to ask questions and debate the topics under discussion. Short questionnaires were provided to attendees to gather feedback on their experience of the information provided to ensure continuous improvement. Such feedback was especially important in the context of ensuring effective online delivery of training material. A last webinar in this series, focused on security lifecycles and ongoing personnel security, took place on 17 February 2021.

The second series of four webinars on the same topic will take place between 15-16 June 2021 and will include participants to be nominated from AFCAC Member States.

Final mission on counter-MANPADS in Benin

Cotonou, 7-11 December 2020
In April 2018 and March 2019 respectively, the authorities of Benin benefitted from phases I and II of the activity dedicated to the assessment and mitigation of the MANPADS threat delivered as part of the CASE I Project. The third and final phase of this activity formed one of the very first activities delivered under the CASE II Project and was delivered from 7 to 11 December 2020. In total, 16 participants have taken part in this activity.

As with the initial phases, the activity was organised and conducted by the French Direction Générale de l’Aviation Civile (DGAC) which coordinated delivery through multi-agency teams consisting of personnel from the DGAC, the Gendarmerie des Transports Aériens and the French Air Force.

The objective of this third mission was to review the national and local mitigation measures designed to tackle the vulnerabilities identified during previous phases and reduce residual risks.

To conform with the health protocol in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the opening and closing ceremony held by the Director General of the Agence Nationale de l’Aviation Civile du Bénin (ANAC) – the Appropriate Authority of Benin – was organised via videoconference.

At the end of this phase III, ANAC Benin, under the leadership of its coordinator, embarked on the process of finalising its action plan in response to the threat generated by MANPADS and infantry weapons. The CASE II representatives would like to express their appreciation for the involvement, motivation and work of all the participants.

With the completion of phase III, the support programme on MANPADS offered to Benin has now been completed. Within the framework of bilateral cooperation between France and Benin, the experts will continue to provide assistance and support to the Beninese authorities.

Appointment of the CASE II Project Director

Paris, 1 December 2020
In December 2020, Mr Mark Rodmell was appointed as ECAC’s Deputy Executive Secretary, with one of his responsibilities to act as the CASE II Project Director. In this position he is overall responsible for the Project on behalf of ECAC. This includes the overall supervision of the plan of activities and of the project team. In particular, the Project Director will contribute to build and maintain high-level relationships with Partner States and ECAC Member States and all organisations involved, and in particular with the European Commission. Mr Rodmell’s extensive experience in aviation security and in international relations will be a great asset in leading the implementation of the CASE II Project.

The CASE II Project team

Paris, November 2020
Until now, three project team members have been recruited, and are rolling out the first actions of the CASE II Project: Mr Lionnel Maugis, Mr Jae Tonkin, Ms Jasna Gamber.

Mr Lionnel Maugis joined the ECAC Secretariat as Project Manager in September 2020. Lionnel is a French civil aviation engineer who started his career in Europe with the French Air Navigation Directorate and has been providing consultancy services extensively in Africa (notably as project manager of the revision of the ASECNA international convention). He has been based in-country in the Middle East (Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain) since 2010 for Paris Airport Group (ADPI) as resident project manager, where he was also in charge of security assessments managing security experts, and since 2015 in Asia as chief development officer at Maldives Velana International Airport, accountable for a large portfolio of development projects. Lionnel is a practitioner of aviation safety and security, airport planning design and construction, with operational, regulatory and programme management experience.

Mr Jae Tonkin joined the CASE II Project team in the role of Aviation Security Manager in November 2020. Jae previously held the position of Compliance Manager at the United Kingdom’s Civil Aviation Authority where he specialised in the planning and delivery of the national covert and overt testing programmes and also provided oversight of the implementation of Security Management Systems. Jae is passionate about the aspirations of the CASE II Project and its aim of supporting capacity building in a range of Partner States across Africa, Asia and the Middle East, and he looks forward to applying his experience and enthusiasm in contribution to its success.

Ms Jasna Gamber completes the CASE II Project team as Project Management Assistant. Before joining ECAC, Jasna was responsible for the content and programme management of congresses and workshops. During the past years she has served as a liaison between conference departments and related offices, governments, external partners and thousands of participants. Motivated and dynamic, Jasna is eager to support the CASE II Project to deliver a wide range of capacity building activities and to contribute to the success of this follow-up to the well-received original CASE Project.

New positions of aviation security specialists will soon be advertised on the ECAC and CASE II websites.

8th Meeting of the RASFALG group of the African Civil Aviation Commission

Videoconference, 29 October 2020
ECAC was invited to participate in the 8th meeting of the AFCAC’s (African Civil Aviation Commission) Regional Aviation Security and Facilitation Group (RASFALG) for Africa and the Indian Ocean region which was convened virtually due to travel restrictions as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

During the meeting 11 presentations were delivered, including one on the main features of the CASE II Project. Central to the presentation was the outlining of the new activities of the CASE II Project including the intended use and development of a Country Programme of Action (CPA) for each Partner State.

The CPA is designed to ensure the needs of Partner States are met and provides an efficient roadmap to achieving the goals in terms of sustainable security outcomes. The CPA provides a living and evolving document to ensure the delivery of relevant activities over the duration of the project.

The meeting was chaired by Tunisia and attended by 136 participants representing 26 Africa-Indian Ocean (AFI) Member States, the ICAO Aviation Security Training Centre (ASTC), the Ecole Régionale de la Navigation Aérienne et du Management (ERNAM) from Dakar Senegal, the Ministry of Transport of Singapore, and 8 international/regional organisations Airports Council International (ACI), AFCAC, African Union Commission (AUC), Civil Aviation Safety and Security Oversight Agency (CASSOA), ECAC, ICAO, International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) and United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

Project Kick-off meeting

Videoconference, 14 October 2020
The official launch of the CASE II Project took place at the kick-off meeting organised in October 2020. More than 40 participants from ECAC Member States, the European Commission and industry organisations joined virtually to discuss the initiation of activities.

The CASE II Project will not only represent a continuation and deepening of the approach of the CASE I Project, but also a scaling up, in terms of scope, objectives and resources, with the support of ECAC Member States to strengthen the aviation security regime of Partner States and to promote best practices. The Project Team’s size for the delivery of activities has also been doubled with a higher emphasis on the recruitment of aviation security experts to maximise impact of the action, to reach a maximum of Partner States who are facing challenging times.

Following this meeting, ECAC Member States and Partner States have been invited to share their priorities in terms of capacity-building activity and to provide details of resources, notably in terms of aviation security experts, that could be made available to the project.