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Russian inspectors to perform observation flight over France

September 08, 2014, 4:47 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, September 08, /ITAR-TASS/. A group of Russian inspectors will perform an observation flight over the territory of France on board an Antonov An-30B aircraft (NATO reporting name: Clank) within the framework of the Open Skies Treaty, a senior Russian Defense Ministry official said.

“The inspection flight will be carried out on September 8-12 from the Orleans-Bricy airdrome. The maximum flight range is 2,078 kilometers,” acting chief of the ministry’s national Nuclear Risk Reduction Center Sergey Zabello told Itar-Tass.

Zabello said the flight would be conducted along an agreed route, and French specialists on board will control the use of surveillance equipment and observation of treaty provisions.

“The flight is being carried out to promote greater transparency in the military activity of the Treaty’s member states and to strengthen security through confidence building measures,” he said.

In the same period, on September 8-12, Zabello said, a group of Turkish inspectors will perform an observation flight over the territory of the Russian Federation on board a CN-235 plane.

The Open Skies Treaty was signed in 1992 and has 34 member states. It entered into force in 2002. Surveillance flights are conducted over Russia, the United States, Canada and European countries.

The key tasks of the treaty are to develop transparency, monitor the fulfillment of armament control agreements, and expand capabilities to prevent crises in the framework of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and other international organizations.

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