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High-level meeting in Montreal to discuss risks to civil aviation in conflict zones

MONTREAL - Top officials from four international organizations will meet Tuesday in Montreal to discuss risks to civilian aviation in conflict zones.

The meeting will bring together representatives of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and three groups that represent the world's air carriers, airports and air navigation service providers.

The get-together at ICAO headquarters comes after the UN body that governs civil aviation consulted with various international and regional organizations.

It will bring together representatives of the International Air Transport Association, Airports Council International and the Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation.

ICAO says the meeting is being held in light of the recent downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17.

The plane was shot down by a surface-to-air missile while flying over a war-torn section of Ukraine. A Canadian was among the almost 300 who died in that disaster.

ICAO says in a release Tuesday's meeting will discuss "appropriate actions to be pursued in order to more effectively mitigate potential risks to civil aviation arising from conflict zones."

In recent days, tensions in the Middle East have prompted a number of airlines to temporarily halt flights to Tel Aviv. On Tuesday, a rocket struck less than two kilometres from the international airport.

Air Canada says one of its flights had to perform a "go-around" over southern Israel on Friday until airspace conditions could be confirmed as safe for landing.

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