MOSCOW, 22 July (Department of Operational Support) — The United Nations and the Russian Federation held the Seventh Annual Aviation Talks on 21 and 22 July as part of the official business programme of the International Aviation and Space Salon MAKS-2021.
The United Nations was represented by Atul Khare, Under-Secretary-General for Operational Support. He was accompanied by Christian Saunders, Assistant Secretary-General, Office of Supply Chain Management, and other senior team members. The delegation of the Russian Federation was led by Alexander Neradko, Director General of the Federal Air Transport Agency, accompanied by his senior staff.
The parties discussed issues related to the aviation services provided by the Russian Federation to United Nations field operations. Participants deeply appreciated the opportunity to hold the event despite the ongoing restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Under-Secretary-General Khare expressed his gratitude to the Russian Federation for its steadfast contributions to peacekeeping operations, along with contributions to global efforts aimed at controlling the COVID-19 pandemic. Mr. Neradko emphasized the long-standing cooperation between the Russian Federation and the United Nations, assuring the United Nations of his country’s continued commitment to close cooperation in the field of aviation.
The parties covered a wide range of issues, specifically in the areas of safety and security, procurement, and aviation support to the rotation of United Nations uniformed personnel. Medical evacuation and the United Nations MEDEVAC Mechanism were also discussed, including how Russian health facilities will participate as receiving destinations within the MEDEVAC Mechanism to offer COVID-19 treatment to United Nations personnel and partners.
During his official visit to the Russian Federation, Mr. Khare also participated in several meetings pertaining to bilateral cooperation between the United Nations and the Russian Federation, including with representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Health.
The United Nations Department of Operational Support and the Federal Air Transport Agency agreed to continue holding regular annual aviation talks. Mr. Neradko warmly accepted the invitation extended by Under-Secretary-General Khare to attend the 2022 meeting in New York.