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Russian military inspectors to make observation flights in Denmark

August 25, 2014, 21:51 UTC+3 COPENHAGEN
Usually, 15-20 Russian inspectors take part in such missions, which usually involve 6-8 Danish Defense Ministry officers
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COPENHAGEN, August 25. /ITAR-TASS/. A Russian plane will make observation flights in Denmark under the Open Skies Treaty, a Danish Air Force spokesperson said on Monday.

This is a routine check which allows Russia to ensure that Denmark has as many aircraft and bases it has declared. This is a matter of openness, the Ritzaus Bureau news agency quoted him as saying.

Usually, Russian Air Force officers make one or two such observation flights in Denmark annually. Last week, Danish observers made similar flights in Russia for five days.

Under the Treaty, countries are to notify each other about their flights 72 hours prior, and Russia did so last week.

Russia’s Antonov-32B will fly out of the aerodrome in Aalborg, and Denmark expects the Russian aircraft to use the route that covers most of the country’s territory.

Usually, 15-20 Russian inspectors take part in such missions, which usually involve 6-8 Danish Defense Ministry officers.

The Treaty on Open Skies entered into force on January 1, 2002, and currently has 34 States Parties. It establishes a program of unarmed aerial surveillance flights over the entire territory of its participants. The treaty is designed to enhance mutual understanding and confidence by giving all participants, regardless of size, a direct role in gathering information about military forces and activities of concern to them.

The Vienna Document on Confidence and Security-Building Measures and Disarmament in Europe was adopted by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in November 2011. It calls for inspections of specific areas and units in order to oversee military activities and make annual assessments of information provided by each member state. The U.S. is a member of the OSCE since 1973, Russia since 1992.

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