MFA Georgia: Int'l Flights Cannot be Implemented at Sokhumi Airport

The Foreign Ministry of Georgia has responded to the information spread through Russian media that Russia tries to open the Sokhumi Babushara Airport for international flights.  

According to the Agency, international flights cannot be implemented at the Sokhumi Airport without Georgian side’s permission.

“International flights cannot be implemented at occupied Abkhazia Region (in particular, at the Sokhumi Airport), as long as it is against the international law, the charter of ICAO, and Georgian legislation”, says the statement spread by MFA Georgia.

As MFA Georgia explains, according to the Law of Georgia on Occupied Territories, the emergency regime applies to the Abkhazian region and its airspace, which is supported by the Civil Aviation Organization.

Additionally, the representatives of MFA Georgia note that the Georgian Transport Administration will use all available leverage, including international mechanisms, to protect ICAO and international standards.

“According to the charter of ICAO, the Sokhumi Airport and the relevant airspace has been closed by Georgian side since 1993. It is not certified by the Georgian Civil Aviation Agency (GCAA). Furthermore, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) recognizes Abkhazia as a part of Georgia. Accordingly, international flights cannot be implemented there, as it is against the international law, the charter of ICAO, and Georgian legislation”, reads the statement of the Foreign Ministry of Georgia.  

On July 26, the information was spread in Russian media that the Sokhumi Airport has been assigned the international code of URAS. The URAS code is assigned to CIS countries. By assigning a URAS code, Sokhumi Airport was registered as the Rostov airspace.

Sokhumi Babushara Airport, previously known as Sokhumi Dranda Airport, is the main airport of Abkhazia. It is located in the village of Babushara next to the larger village of Dranda and some 20 kilometers from Sokhumi, the capital of occupied Abkhazia Region. 

By Ana Dumbadze 

29 July 2019 16:52