Round-the-clock air policing: skyguide is supporting the authorities and Air Force
Geneva, 11th May 2016. The hijacking of an Ethiopian Airlines flight in February 2014
by the co-pilot of the aircraft made headlines in the media around the world. On the
morning of February 17th 2014, Ethiopian Airlines’ flight 702 entered Swiss airspace,
accompanied – in line with international agreements – by Italian and French fighter jets.
Eventually, the plane landed in Geneva thanks to the professional assistance of the air
traffic controllers on duty. Last Monday, the hijacker – who is requesting political
asylum in Switzerland – was sentenced to a period of custodial therapy. This incident
confirmed the need for a round-the-clock air policing service. The introduction of this
extended service represents a big challenge for Swiss air traffic control.