(…) the Interstate Aviation Committee report also indicates that the Committee does not operate under the Chicago Convention. On 13 April, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, acting in his capacity as president of the Russian state commission convened to investigate the causes of the plane crash, transferred management responsibilities for the investigation to the the Interstate Aviation Committee. The relevant instructions stipulated that “the investigation ought to be conducted in accordance with schedule 13 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation. (...). This decision has been accepted by the Polish government” (…)

The Interstate Aviation Committee report unequivocally indicates that Poland and Russia have agreed to apply schedule 13 only, not the entire convention – Piotr Schramm, expert in international law at GESSEL, confirms. This fact has significant implications: seeing as the Interstate Aviation Committee did not work within the framework of the Chicago Convention, Poland may not have recourse to the Convention’s appeals procedures.

If we do send a complaint to the International Civil Aviation Organisation, we might well be told that ICAO refuses to consider it – this organisation only investigates incidents involving civilian aircraft, and the Polish presidential delegation’s flight to Smolensk had the status of a state flight , Schramm clarifies (…)

Tomasz Pietryga, Rzeczpospolita