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Russia intends to submit counterclaims to US over Open Skies Treaty

Moscow promises to respond to Washington's breaches of the pact on aerial surveillance flights

MOSCOW, September 27. /TASS/. Russia has a number of counter-claims over the United States’ compliance with the Treaty on Open Skies, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told the media on Wednesday.

"We have a number of counter-claims addressed to the United States concerning some aspects of compliance with that treaty. There are certain outstanding issues, not being discussed in public space, but still unresolved ones," he said. 

Russia expects the United States will impose restrictions on Russian planes’ flights under the Treaty on Open Skies as of January 1, 2018, he went on. 

Russia will certainly respond to the US for violation of the treaty.  "The United States has declared a certain tightening of restrictions on open skies flights by our planes," he said. "As far as we understand, they will take effect starting from January 1, 2018."

"Apparently, things are coming to taking certain retaliatory measures by the Russian side," Ryabkov said. "But before we announce something on this, we should analyze the situation together with our military and come to an expert finding and look at what form to respond to the Americans," he added.

"But there will be a response, I have no doubt about this," Ryabkov stressed.

"Naturally, this is not a step worthy of a partner," he said. "We believe that this treaty gives no unilateral advantages to any party. It is a mutually beneficial, crucial and valuable document worth preserving, but the United States has demonstrated by its actions that it prefers to proceed along the path of pressures."

"Naturally, no decisions they would like to see can be worked out under pressure and no unilateral concessions by us are possible in principle," he added.