27 February 1996


Press Release
SC/6182



SECURITY COUNCIL DEPLORES DOWNING OF CIVIL AIRCRAFT BY CUBAN AIR FORCE, PRESIDENTIAL STATEMENT REQUESTS INVESTIGATION BY ICAO

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The Security Council early Tuesday morning strongly deplored the shooting down by the Cuban air force of two civil aircraft on 24 February 1996, which apparently resulted in the death of four persons. In a statement read out by its President, Madeleine K. Albright (United States), the Council requested the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to investigate the incident in its entirety. It called on the Governments concerned (Cuba and the United States) to cooperate fully with the investigation. The Council recalled that, according to international law, as reflected in Article 3 bis of the International Convention on Civil Aviation of 7 December 1944 added by the Montreal Protocol of 10 May 1984, States must refrain from the use of weapons against civil aircraft in flight and must not endanger the lives of persons on board and the safety of aircraft. It requested ICAO to report its findings to the Council as soon as possible. The meeting was called to order at 3:45 a.m. and adjourned at 3:50 a.m. The full text of the statement, to be issued as document S/PRST/1996/9, reads as follows: "The Security Council strongly deplores the shooting down by the Cuban air force of two civil aircraft on 24 February 1996, which apparently has resulted in the death of four persons. "The Security Council recalls that, according to international law, as reflected in Article 3 bis of the International Convention on Civil Aviation of 7 December 1944 added by the Montreal Protocol of 10 May 1984, States must refrain from the use of weapons against civil aircraft in flight and must not endanger the lives of persons on board and the safety of aircraft. States are obliged to respect international law and human rights norms in all circumstances. "The Security Council requests that the International Civil Aviation Organization investigate this incident in its entirety and calls on the governments concerned to cooperate fully with this investigation. The Council requests that the International Civil Aviation Organization report its findings to the Council as soon as possible. The Council will consider that report and any further information presented to it without delay."

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