Cablegate: Civil Aviation Official Comments On

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.





E.O. 12958: N/A
SUBJECT: Civil Aviation Official Comments on
Safety/Security and Turkish Airlines' Procurement Plans

REF: State 261967


1. (SBU) Topa Toker, Director General of Civil Aviation
(DGCA), told us that the Transport and Communications
Minister is very interested in achieving high standards
for aviation safety and security, and in maintaining a
cooperative relationship with USG aviation authorities.
He suggested that the FAA Administrator forward a copy
of FAA's safety review to Minister Yildirim as a means
of maintaining positive momentum on this issue. We also
raised the Cape Town and Montreal Conventions and
American Airlines' codeshare application. End Summary.

Safety and Security

2. (SBU) On October 3, we delivered an August 29 letter
from Transportation Security Administration (TSA)
Assistant Administrator Michael Robinson summarizing
TSA's 2002 review of security at Ataturk International

Airport in Istanbul, and noted that a TSA team would
conduct another assessment during the week of October

3. (SBU) Toker said that Transport Minister Binali
Yildirim had become much more engaged in safety and
security issues following his meetings with the
Secretary of Transportation and the FAA Administrator in

Washington last month. The Minister is eager to
maintain a cooperative relationship with the FAA and
TSA. Toker told us that the Minister called him

following his (the Minister's) meeting with the
Ambassador on October 1 (septel) to ensure that DGCA
fully cooperates with the TSA team.

3. (SBU) Toker told us that DGCA is working on a bill to
administratively reform the agency and will submit it to
the Minister in the next several weeks. He expects the
Minister to endorse it, but stated that FAA's support
for the reform effort would be helpful. In particular,
he suggested that the FAA Administrator send a letter to
the Transport and Communications Minister transmitting a
copy of FAA's report on air safety issues.

Cape Town Convention

4. (SBU) Econoff and Econ Specialist inquired as to the
status of Turkish ratification efforts for the Cape Town
Convention on International Interests in Mobile
Equipment on Matters Specific to Aircraft Equipment.
Econoff explained that ratification could enable Turkish
Airlines (THY) to qualify for a lower exposure fee if it
were to seek U.S. Eximbank financing for a possible
purchase of Boeing aircraft. Toker said he would look
into the ratification question. He opined that THY
might purchase or lease new airplanes, but the number of
planes was likely to fall far short of 50. Note: THY
told visiting Eximbank Board Member April Foley in
September that THY might acquire as many as 50 new
aircraft. End Note. We also requested information on
the ratification process from MFA's Aviation Department,
but have not yet received a response.

American Airlines' (AA's) New Codeshare

5. (SBU) Econoff raised AA's application for a codeshare
with British Airways (BA) on BA flights between London
and Istanbul. Toker responded that DGCA was aware of
the request, but that AA had yet to file a complete

Montreal Convention

6. (SBU) Econoff delivered ref A points urging Turkey to
join the Montreal Convention on airline accident
liability. Edelman

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