US, Morocco, ACAO Strengthen Aviation Security Partnership

The conference was co-organized by the Arab Civil Aviation Organization (ACAO), the U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and the government of Morocco.

US, Morocco, ACAO Join Forces to Boost Transnational Cooperation on Aviation Security

Rabat – Marrakech hosted this last week a landmark conference on aviation security, with the event aiming to share expertise and best practices on the protection of civil aviation.

Co-organized by the Arab Civil Aviation Organization (ACAO), the U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and the government of Morocco, the event was held in the presence of high-ranking officials from more than 14 countries across the Middle East and Africa. 

Throughout the week, aviation officials shared best practices about how to protect civilian aviation from a range of threats, including cyberattacks, drones, chemical and biological attacks, and explosives, among others. Officials also worked on developing effective plans for managing the risks from such threats. 

Commenting on the significance of the event, TSA Regional Director Jason Schwabel said: “The global transportation security sector cannot function unless we emphasize the word ‘global.’”

Schwabel also highlighted the importance of transnational cooperation, the official explained that “the threats” international civil aviation faces do “not respect borders or nationality,” adding that countries should work together to make sure “transportation systems remain safe.” 

Schwabel further praised Morocco for hosting the conference, noting that the United States and Morocco have a mutual commitment to supporting regional peace and security.  

In May of last year, Morocco hosted the Defeat-ISIS Coalition ministerial, the first such gathering on the African continent, which also took place in Marrakech.   

Read also: Morocco Vows to Improve Safety Standards of Its Military Aircraft

ACAO Director General Abdennabi Manar stated that the “relationship between ACAO and the US TSA is strong.”

“Our partnership contributes to strengthening aviation security in the Arab region and beyond. ACAO and the US TSA play complementary and reinforcing roles in supporting international Civil Aviation security,” Manar added.

The ACAO official explained that his agency will further mobilize the set of competencies at its disposal, to pursue “common objectives for the benefit of our community.”   

Several U.S. government agencies supported the organization of the conference, including the Export Control and Border Security program at the US Department of State, as well as the US Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. 

Morocco’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation also played a critical role in supporting the gathering.  

Source: MWN

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