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British, US inspectors to make observation flights over RF, Belarus

August 06, 2012, 13:31 UTC+3
During the flight along the coordinated route, Russian specialists will control on board the plane the use of equipment and monitoring systems
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MOSCOW, August 6 (Itar-Tass) — British and US inspectors will make observation flights over Russia and Belarus on August 6-10 within the framework of the international Treaty on Open Skies, the press service of the Russian Defense Ministry told Tass on Monday.

The flights will be made on a Swedish Saab OS100 aircraft. “The SAAB OS 100 plane and observation means installed on board have been inspected as to compliance with international standards, including with participation of Russian inspectors,” ministry sources said.

“During the flight along the coordinated route, Russian specialists will control on board the plane the use of equipment and monitoring systems in accordance with treaty commitments,” they added.

The Treaty on Open Skies was signed in 1992, and it currently involves 34 states. Areial surveillance flights are made over the territories of the United States, Canada, European states and Russia. All in all, over 800 flights have been made since the signing of the treaty.

The main task of the “open skies” regime is to promote transparency and openness, to control the implementation of existing or future agreements in the sphere of arms control as well as to expand possibilities for preventing crises and control crisis situations within the framework of the OSCE and other international organizations.

The regime may involve in the future new spheres, such as environmental protection.

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