When international coordination works–we tend to ignore the results. But when things go badly, groups like the ICAO enter into the mix. This body, dating back to a November 1944 agreement among 55 states, is trying to find ways to keep track of airplanes as a result of the missing Malaysian jet. But sometimes even just coordinating details can be tricky:
“It’s complicated work to get 191 states to agree on anything,” said Anthony Philbin, a spokesman for the United Nations agency, known as ICAO.
Another expert with long experience in multinational aviation negotiations, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said that “ICAO doesn’t feel very good about the aftermath of Air France 447, and then, lo and behold, we get Malaysia.”
“ICAO doesn’t have a very good story to tell,” he said. “Nobody does.”