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    The NATO flag is seen through barbed wire as it flies in front of the new NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium May 24, 2017

    Montenegro, Albania Agree Cooperation Within NATO Air Policing Mission – MoD

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    BELGRADE (Sputnik) - Montenegrin Defense Minister Predrag Boskovic and his Albanian counterpart Olta Xhacka signed on Tuesday an agreement on cooperation within the NATO Air Policing defense mission, the Montenegrin Defense Ministry said.

    "The agreement will allow for the Hellenic and Italian Armed Forces jets, which carry out the mission to protect the Montenegrin airspace, to cross freely the borders of Montenegro and Albania during the Air Policing mission. Therefore, the conduct of the mission will be significantly facilitated for the Greek and Italian aviation," the defense ministry said in a statement.

    READ MORE: UK Cabinet Encourages NATO Member States to Reach 2% Defense Spending Target

    Albania joined NATO in 2009, while Montenegro became a member state in 2017. On June 5 this year, Greece and Italy began NATO air patrols over Montenegro under Podgorica’s request, as the country does not have its own fighter jets.

    These NATO patrols are aimed to respond to military or civilian aircraft in distress, or to those aircraft that do not follow international flight regulations and approach the airspace of NATO member states.

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