Nunavut Post

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Penalties imposed against those implicated with Russian-controlled aircraft grounded in Yellowknife


Key takeaways: 

  • Charter flight broke Canadian airspace regulations, Transport Canada states.
  • According to N.W.T. Infrastructure Minister Diane Archie, an airplane carrying Russian passengers on the way to the High Arctic was grounded there on Tuesday, March 1. 

Fines imposed for breaching limitations: 

Transport Canada states it has laid thousands of dollars worth of penalties against those implicated with a charter flight carrying two Russian residents grounded in Yellowknife Tuesday.

Info of the plane broke Wednesday when the N.W.T.’s infrastructure minister, Diane Archie, told the Legislative Assembly the passengers had been on the way to Resolute, Nunavut, as part of an Arctic trip in a “large all-terrain utility vehicle.”

On Friday, Transport Canada ratified it had laid $3,000 penalties against the Russian passenger who had hired the airplane and each of the plane’s two pilots. The airplane operator, Dunard Engineering Ltd., has been fined $15,000.

The operator is based out of Geneva, Switzerland.

Sau Sau Liu, a senior communications consultant with Transport Canada, stated that the federal agency probed the flight in an email. Though the plane is not Russian-owned or registered, Transport Canada saw it violated new airspace constraints declared February 27 in reply to Russia’s attack on Ukraine.

Also read: Nunavut Quest sled dog race back after a pandemic break

Penalties levied after plane grounded in Yellowknife

Those limitations shut Canada’s airspace to any Russian-owned, operated, or hired aircraft.

Liu told Transport Canada is letting the plane in question operate in Canadian airspace to leave Yellowknife, but it can’t have any passengers on board.

No information was offered regarding the Russian passengers or where they were.

“The unit will not pause to take additional enforcement action should additional happenings of non-compliance with the rules and regulations be found,” Liu wrote.

‘No flags raised’

In an update to the Legislative Assembly Thursday, Archie said the aircraft was held till the federal government wrapped up its probe.

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