KUCHING - Malaysia Airports remains vigilant in ensuring the highest level of security and safety at its airports after successfully completing the act of aggression full scale exercise that was held in collaboration with the National Security Council (MKN) and Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) at Kuching International Airport (KIA) today. These exercises were part of the annual scheduled full-scale simulations to ensure readiness in the event of terrorism threats, riots and explosions.
This full-scale Act of Aggression exercise is carried out as per the Airport Emergency Plan (AEP), a documentation that encompasses contingency plans to achieve the coordinated actions through the defined guidelines of the general functions and responsibilities of the operational units at the airport, government agencies and airlines in the event of an airport emergency. The purpose of the AEP is in accordance with the provisions stated by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Annex 17 Chapter 5 where states the management of response to acts of unlawful interference; and Annex 14 Chapter 9.1, where States are required to establish an emergency plan to commensurate with aircraft operations at the airport alongside with Airport Standards Directives 701.
According to the acting group chief executive officer of Malaysia Airports, Raja Azmi Raja Nazuddin, “The exercise was part of Malaysia Airports commitment in ensuring the safety and security of our airport. As at October 2018, Kuching International Airport (KIA) registered 4.5 million passengers, which is an 8% increase from the same period last year. With the numbers climbing every year, holding a full-scale exercise with the re-enactment of possible threats at the airport is timely for the benefit of the airport’s surrounding community. This exercise was a follow through from the previous act of aggression exercises that were held at Kota Kinabalu International Airport in 2016; and Sandakan Airport and KL International Airport in 2017”.
Azmi further added, “Hence, as an airport operator, we remain vigilant in playing our role to safeguard national security and the wellbeing of our passengers. It is imperative for us to practice and manage aspects of airport operations as best as possible in facing crisis situations such as this,” he added further.
More than 800 participants from 42 agencies such as the National Security Council (MKN), Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM), Civil Aviation Authority Malaysia (CAAM), Department of Information (JaPen), Fire and Rescue Department of Malaysia (JBPM) in particular HAZMAT and CBRNe, Royal Malaysia Armed Forces (ATM), Malaysia Civil Defense Department (JPAM) and Ministry of Health Malaysia (KKM) took part in the exercise alongside the airline and airport staff.
This 18-hour exercise specifically focused on the measures and actions taken to counter possible riots, explosion and terrorist acts that may occur at the airport. It was the culmination of a three-day session which started on 3 December 2018 with a workshop followed by a tabletop exercise. Among the series of briefing sessions included topics presented by the MKN on the guidelines, policies and mechanism outlined in the Directive National Security Council MKN 18, MKN 20 and MKN 21. There were also sharing sessions on the terrorism threats, riots, airport emergency plan (AEP), risk management and business continuity plan, airlines emergency response plan, emergency plan by the air traffic controller, media management in crisis, as well as chemical, biological, radioactive, nuclear and explosives (CBRNe) incident-handling.
The grand finale saw all participants starting the day off as early as 8.00 am and gathering at KIA to engage in the full-scale exercise with the re-enaction of possible riots, explosions and CBRNe and as well as hostage taking and terrorist attack. Passengers were advised to remain calm throughout the exercise and get the necessary assistance from the airport staff.