SNP MEP To Meet Eurocontrol On Scottish CIA Flights

15 February 2006
SNP MEP Alyn Smith has today received confirmation that EuroControl, the European air traffic and safety agency, does hold information onthe flight paths of specific planes and has provided this informationto the Council of Europe investigation of possible rendition flightsin Europe.

The Director General of EuroControl has offered to meet Mr Smithafter confirming that the inquiry had not addressed planes known tohave passed through Scottish airports.

Mr Smith had sent EuroControl a list of plane registrations askingfor information on where they went after leaving Scottish airspace.Speaking from the European Parliament in Strasbourg Mr Smith said

"I am concerned that some of the planes the SNP has inquired about donot appear to be subject to the Council of Europe's investigation as EuroControl has not been asked for information on them.

"I provided EuroControl with a list of a number of planes known tohave passed through Scottish airports that are alleged to have beenused as extraordinary rendition flights.

"While some information has been provided to the Council of Europethe absence of these other planes is a concern. I will be lookinginto this and will be raising the issue with the Director General ofEuroControl when we meet in Brussels.

"It also worries me that the information from EuroControl is only tobe made available to the Council of Europe. This information shouldbe made available not only to the European Parliament inquiry butalso to inquiries in member states.

"Knowing where these planes go is an important part of finding outwhat goes on onboard and what they are being used for. The risk thatnot all Scottish flights will be investigated only highlights theneed for a full independent Scottish investigation of the allegationsover rendition flights."

In his response to Alyn Smith MEP's letter the Director General ofEuroControl Victor Aguado stated

"We provide consolidated data on the flight plans of the aircraftidentified. The information refers to the registration number of the aircraft, the airports of departure and destination as well as thedate and times of the flights concerned. I should perhaps point out that we never have any indication of the purpose of flights nor thenumber of passengers being carried as flight plans do not contain this kind of information"

"The list you annexed to your letter is broader than the listsaddressed by the Council of Europe. Therefore I am ready to meet youin my office at your earliest convenience so we can discuss thismatter and any other of mutual interest."