Treaty on Open Skies – Observation Flight Over Russia

Between 21-25 September 2020, Germany, France, and Romania will conduct observation flight over the territory of the Russian Federation as part of the implementation of the Treaty on Open Skies. This was announced by Sergey Ryzhkov, head of the Russian National center for nuclear risk reduction. the flight will be on a Romanian AN-30 observation aircraft from Kubinka airfield.

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During the flight along the agreed route, Russian specialists on board the observation aircraft will monitor the strict observance of the agreed flight parameters and application of the monitoring equipment stipulated by the contract, said the Russian Ministry of Defence.

The AN-30 observation aircraft is a type of airplane which is not designed to use any weapons. The aircraft and the surveillance equipment installed on it (aerial cameras) passed an international inspection, which was also attended by Russian specialists, which excludes the use of other technical means not provided for in the agreement, noted the Ministry.

The Treaty on Open Skies has been effective for 28 years after its entry into force on 1 January 2002. On May 22 the Trump administration submitted a formal notification of its decision to withdraw from the Treaty on Open Skies. Effective six months from the date of issue of this notification, the United States will no longer be a party to the Treaty.

"We may, however, reconsider our withdrawal should Russia return to full compliance with the Treaty," said the US Department of State.

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