30 March 2016
A recent article by a former Indonesian air force chief over-simplifies a complex operational and technical issue.
On March 21, 2016, The Straits Times re-published an article ‘A strange anomaly in management of airspace’ by Chappy Hakim, former Indonesian air force chief, which appeared in the Indonesian language newspaper Kompas on 14 March. He argued that Indonesia must reclaim the airspace over the Riau islands currently managed by Singapore as a matter of sovereignty, pride and nationalism.
Although Chappy acknowledged that Europe Flight Information Regions (FIR) crossed national boundaries, he exclaimed that “we are not Europe”. Chappy’s comments display a fundamental misunderstanding of the international system of FIRs established by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), which has been in operation since 1946.
… Barry Desker is Distinguished Fellow, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. He served as Ambassador to Indonesia from 1986 to 1993. This commentary appeared earlier in The Straits Times.
RSIS / Online
Last updated on 04/04/2016