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Russian inspectors to perform observation flights over Slovenia, Croatia

May 25, 2015, 3:20 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The flights would be conducted along agreed routes, and Slovenian and Croatian specialists on board will control the use of surveillance equipment and observation of treaty provisions
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MOSCOW, May 25. /TASS/. Russian inspectors will perform observation flights over the territories of Slovenia and Croatia within the framework of the Open Skies Treaty, a senior Russian Defense Ministry official said.

"As part of implementation of the international Open Skies Treaty, a Russian group of inspectors plans to conduct consecutive surveillance flights on board a Russian An-30B aircraft over Slovenia and Croatia," chief of the ministry’s National Nuclear Risk Reduction Center Sergey Ryzhkov told journalists.

"The flights will be performed on May 25-30, 2015 from the Open Skies airfields Ljubljana [Slovenia] and Zagreb [Croatia]," Ryzhkov said, adding that maximum range of the flights will be 500 and 1,300 kilometers respectively.

He said the flights would be conducted along agreed routes, and Slovenian and Croatian specialists on board will control the use of surveillance equipment and observation of treaty provisions. These will be the 14th and 15th surveillance flights of the Russian Federation over the territories of the Treaty’s member states in 2015.

Ryzhkov also said that "in the May 25-29 period, in the framework of implementation of the international Open Skies Treaty, a joint mission of the United States and Norway plans to conduct an observation flight over the territory of the Russian Federation on board a Turkish CN-235 observation aircraft."

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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