The Ministry of Interior of Turkey has recently issued the Regulation Regarding Security Measures in Relation to General Aviation Air Transportation (“Regulation”), establishing the principles and procedures regarding the security measures to be taken for the execution of the transportation activities carried out under general aviation and air taxi within the framework of the principle of ensuring public order and security. The Regulation embodies rules regarding the transportation service carried out within the scope of general aviation and air taxi, and the duties, powers and responsibilities of relevant institutions, enterprises, individuals, and airport civilian administrators, yet it exempts flight activities and general aviation transport activities and air taxi, carried out by state-owned aircrafts from its scope. 

In brief, the Regulation offers as follows:

- Fundamental provisions regarding the security of general aviation activities,

- Separation between domestic and international lines at terminals where general aviation activities are carried out in order to prevent contact between arriving and departing passengers, if possible,

- Identifying passenger and cargo loading/unloading areas and controlling these areas with a camera system,

- Sharing the passenger list and airline declaration forms with the airport authority before the flight,

- Determining security measures based on risk assessment approach,

- Determining security measures to be taken in transfer and transit flights,

- Implementation of administrative sanctions for the malfunctions related to general aviation activities.

Fundamental Provisions Regarding the Security of General Aviation Activities

The Regulation governs main rules to be applied in civil aviation. Accordingly, the terminals used for general aviation activities at airports should be separated as domestic and international lines. However, in case that domestic and international lines cannot be separated due to physical insufficiencies, the service is provided by taking necessary measures with the decision of the airport security commission. The Regulation further stipulates that personnel and passengers on general aviation flights must be taken to the apron by passing through the general aviation terminal security checkpoint at airports that are general aviation terminals.

Further, the Regulation emphasizes that loading and unloading a cargo is not allowed outside the designated areas determined for general aviation aircrafts. Pursuant to the Regulation, relevant air navigation unit and the relevant departments of the airport operator determine the landing aircrafts at the airports without a flight plan and and notifies to the General Directorate of Civil Aviation (“SGHM”). The necessary investigation is made by the SGHM and by the airport security branch directorate in terms of aviation security, and the airport local authority is informed about the result of these aircrafts.

Passenger Lists and Airline Declaration Forms

The Regulation defines “airline declaration form” as the form given to the customs offices with passenger list, crew list, cargo manifest, fuel delivery note, catering and duty-free waybill. The    Regulation further discusses that passenger lists must be shared with relevant authorities in different periods. Accordingly, the passenger list must be sent to the airport police department and provincial migration administration to the airport unit, in outbound flights in terms of general aviation activities and international flights. Also, airline declaration forms and its annexes must be sent to the customs administration two hours before departure at the latest. For domestic flights, the passenger list must be submitted to the airport police department by the carrier or ground handling company one hour before departure at the latest.

According to the Regulation, general aviation carriers are obliged to keep the passenger list and airline declaration forms electronically and in hard copy, to keep these documents retrospectively for five years and to submit them to the competent authorities upon request.

 Risk Assessment and Security Measures

The Regulation explicitly establishes that security measures related to general aviation activities are determined according to the risk situation. Accordingly, the risk in general aviation activities is determined in accordance with the order designated under the Regulation from high-risk to low-risk approach in terms of landing and take-off. With this regard, security measures to be taken by the airport local authority within the scope of general aviation activities, are determined according to the risk situation specified in the Regulation.

Audit and Sanctions to be Applied

The airport local authority audits whether the real and legal persons and public officials assigned within the framework of this Regulation, comply with the stipulated obligations. In the event that the airport local authority determines that real and/or legal persons breach any obligation under this Regulation, it notifies relevant authority to impose adequate sanctions stipulated under Turkish Civil Aviation Act numbered 2920 such as revocation of certificate or administrative fines.

Ezgi Ceren Aydoğmuş