Russia not re-elected to UN aviation agency's 36-member council

Russia was decisively removed from a special UN committee on aviation practices, limited to only 36 members.

 President of International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Council, Salvatore Sciacchitano, speaks during the Future Aviation Forum in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (photo credit: REUTERS)
President of International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Council, Salvatore Sciacchitano, speaks during the Future Aviation Forum in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
(photo credit: REUTERS)

Russia on Saturday was not re-elected to the UN aviation agency's governing council, in a boost for Western powers that wanted to hold Moscow accountable for its invasion of Ukraine.

Russia did not receive enough votes to stay on the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)'s 36-nation governing council, during the agency's assembly which runs through Oct. 7 in Montreal.

How was this conclusion reached?

The voting results set off a procedural review on Saturday, following a challenge by Russia. Poppy Khoza, the assembly's president and South Africa's director general of civil aviation, called the circumstance "unprecedented."

Russia closed its airspace to airlines from 36 countries, including all 27 members of the European Union, in response to Ukraine-related sanctions targeting its aviation sector following Moscow's invasion of Ukraine.

An airplane belonging to CAA's commercial aviation academy (credit: CAA)An airplane belonging to CAA's commercial aviation academy (credit: CAA)

The West says Russia has illegally confiscated hundreds of foreign jets, a charge Moscow denies.

Canada and Europe said before the vote they would oppose Russia's re-election to the council.