A group of Russian inspectors will conduct observation flights on a Tu-154M Lk-1 plane over the United States and Canada in the framework of the international Open Skies Treaty, the press service of the Russian Defense Ministry said.
“The flights will be carried out on July 7-21 from Open Skies airfield Elmendorf [the US] and Trenton [Canada],” the press office said.
Such observation flights are performed in order to assist the openness and transparency in the military activities of treaty state members and to enhance security through strengthening trust measures, the press office said.
The flights will fly a previously approved route and US and Canadian specialists on board will control the use of observation equipment and implementation of agreements which have been reached.
These will be 19th and 20th observation flights of the Russian jets above the treaty states members in 2013.
Polish military inspectors will make surveillance flights over the territories of Russia and Belarus under the international Open Skies Treaty starting on Monday, the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement.
Polish experts will conduct the inspection flights on board an Antonov An-30B aircraft between July 8 and 12, the statement said.
The Open Skies Treaty, which entered into force on January 1, 2002, establishes a regime of unarmed aerial observation flights over the territories of its 34 member states to promote openness and the transparency of military forces and activities. Russia ratified the deal in May 2001.
Under the treaty, each aircraft flying under the Open Skies program is fitted with a sensor suite, and image data recorded during the observation flights can be shared among all signatories to support the monitoring of compliance with existing or future arms control treaties.
In the framework of implementing the Treaty on Open Skies a joint group of inspectors from Denmark and Sweden will make an observation flight on May 27-31 over the territory of the Russian Federation on the Swedish SAAB 340 aircraft, the Russian Defense Ministry press service reports.
“The monitoring aircraft belongs to the class of aerial vehicles not designed to carry any armaments. The equipment installed in it has received due international certification with the involvement of Russian representatives,” a report received by Interfax-AVN says.
It notes that the flight will be conducted along a route agreed upon with the Russian side. Russian experts together with their colleagues will inspect the observance of the provisions and understandings on the application of monitoring tools.
Voice of Russia, RIA, Interfax