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Cablegate: Shootdown: Brazilian Air Defense Procedures

VZCZCXRO5474
RR RUEHRG
DE RUEHBR #1170 2481641
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 041641Z SEP 08
FM AMEMBASSY BRASILIA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2358
INFO RUEHRG/AMCONSUL RECIFE 8399
RUEHSO/AMCONSUL SAO PAULO 2660
RUEHRI/AMCONSUL RIO DE JANEIRO 6542
RUEAHLC/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHDC
RUEAWJA/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHINGTON DC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASH DC
RUMIAAA/HQ USSOUTHCOM J2 MIAMI FL
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHDC

UNCLAS BRASILIA 001170

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR WHA/BSC AND L

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PTER FARC BR
SUBJECT: SHOOTDOWN: Brazilian Air Defense Procedures

1. (SBU) SUMMARY AND COMMENT. Paragraph 2 contains an Embassy
translation of the text of the procedures under which Brazil's Air
Defense Authorities can order a shootdown under Brazilian law.
These procedures were provided by the Braizilian Air Force and
should be treated as an internal Brazilian Government document. The
procedures detail a number of safeguards to prevent accidental
shootdowns from occurring, including a requirement for visual
observation of suspect aircraft and a rigorous chain of command for
airspace control. While not specifically mentioned in these
procedures, Brazilian Air Force sources have confirmed that any
decision to fire on a suspect aircraft would require personal
approval from the Chief of the Air Force (to be reported
separately). Air Defense Authorities have also clarified that these
procedures keep their chain of command completely isolated from the
operations of controllers of civil aviation so there is no
possibility for anyone outside the chain to become involved in a
potential shootdown. END SUMMARY AND COMMENT.
2. (U) Text of Brazilian Procedures
The Shoot Down is the last step of a sequence which is very
carefully evaluated and conducted by Air Defense Authorities,
throughout all levels of the decision making process, who are
trained and enabled, in accordance with Brazilian Aerospatial
Defense System`s (SISDABRA) regulations.
Once in possession of intelligence data, provided by various
institutions, including the Federal Police, and after being
identified by radar, the aircraft designated as "suspicious", will
be submitted to the following air space patrol measures,
accomplished by an intercepting aircraft:
Investigatory Measures: Consist of determining or confirming the
identity of an aircraft or, even, observing its behavior. They are
based on the intercepting aircraft`s visible and demonstrative
approach toward the intercepted aircraft, with the purpose of
interrogating it via radio communication or visual signals,
according to international air traffic rules, as referenced in
Appendix 2 of Annex II, of the Convention on International Civil
Aviation;
Intervention Measures: Following Investigatory Measures, the
intercepted aircraft is ordered to change its route, with the
purpose of forcing it to land at a pre- determined airfield, in
order to be submitted to Ground Control Measures, accomplished by
Air Force Authorities, Federal Police and Customs.
Persuasion Measures: Following Intervention Measures, warning shots
with tracer ammunition is discharged next to the intercepting
aircraft, in a way that the intercepted aircraft`s crew can observe
them, with the intent of persuading them to obey the transmitted
orders.
In accordance with SISDABRA`s regulations, the employment of the
aforementioned air space patrol measures is assigned to the
following Aerospatial Defense Authorities:
1. The President of the Republic
2. The Minister of Defense
3. The Air Force Commander [level of approval required for shoot
down]
4. The Commander of Air Operations General-Command
5. The Commander of Brazilian Aerospatial Defense Command
6. The Air Defense Supervisor; and
7. The Air Defense Pilot and Flight Controller
After this entire process, aircraft which do not respond to
Authorities' inquiries will be considered "hostile", becoming
subject to shoot down, which will be determined by the designated
competent authority. As an additional security measure, all
communications between the aerospatial defense authorities involved
will be recorded.
The regulation of the Shoot Down Law, signed by the President of the
Republic, via Decree number 5.144, dated 16 July, 2004, generated
instruments of dissuasion needed patrol Brazilian Airspace. The
matter has been thoroughly discussed within the scope of the Air
Force Command and Brazilian government.
End text
SOBEL

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