Passenger Airlift Case Study
Passenger Charter into Afghanistan
On June 23rd 2002, GTS arranged the first chartered passenger flight into Afghanistan immediately following the fall of the Taliban Regime. The European Branch Chief of the Overseas Building Operations (OBO), a U.S. Government agency, commissioned the flight. The purpose of the trip was to transport U.S. Government contractors and personnel to a pre-bid conference for the American Embassy Building Project in Kabul. They needed to be on site, in a war zone, at a very specific date and time.
GTS arranged for the passengers to meet in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. GTS then chartered a VIP equipped Tupolev TU-154 from Uzbekistan Airways. Through our local agent, we negotiated and organized landing and over flight rights with both the Uzbek and Afghan governments. All passengers were to be picked up by the aircraft and returned to Tashkent on June 28th, 2002. For safety reasons, on that day, the Uzbek Civil Aviation Authority requested an express written landing permission from the Afghan Ministry Transportation prior to dispatching the aircraft. GTS' Project Manager was on site and immediately secured an appointment with the Director of the Afghan Civil Aviation who provided the required document. All passengers returned safely and on schedule to Tashkent.
Despite tremendous liability and diplomatic obstacles, GTS was able to ensure successful on-time operation of the flight into and out of Kabul within 15 minutes of the schedule flight departure.