High-rank officials of six member states of the inter-Balkan, Regional Aeronautical Search and Rescue Advisory Committee (RASARAC) were in Cyprus this week to take part in an exercise coordinated by the island’s Joint Rescue Coordination Center (JRCC), it announced on Saturday.

The training, on issues concerning the organisation and management of the State SAR System took place between November 29 and December 4, for the sixth time since Cyprus signed a Memorandum of Cooperation with the RASARAC in 2018.

Fourteen representatives from Serbia, Bosnia, Hungary, Montenegro, Bulgaria and Slovenia participated in the training.

The inter-Balkan RASARAC Committee, it said, in which 11 countries are members, was initiated by Serbia’s Civil Aviation Directorate and EUROCONTROL, aiming to harmonise, standardise and improve the practices and procedures for successfully conducting cross-border SAR operations.

“The Republic of Cyprus has supported this effort since the first day of the creation of the Committee,” it said, while the JRCC and RASARAC signed in November 2018 a Memorandum of Cooperation in the field of training, which has recently been extended until 2027.

The JRCC also said that its continuous training activity and the completion of the new facilities of the SAR Training Center, reinforce the efforts of the Republic of Cyprus to establish itself not only as a hub for the provision of Search and Rescue services in the eastern Mediterranean, but also as an International Center for offering expertise on SAR issues.