18:52 GMT16 May 2021
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    Russian inspectors will conduct an observation flight over Germany under the Open Skies Treaty on August 24-28, Russia’s National Nuclear Risk Reduction Center head said Monday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — This is Russia’s 27th flight conducted under the treaty this year.

    "A Russian group of experts is planning to conduct an observation flight over the territory of Germany on a Russian AN-30B [NATO reporting name Clank] plane within the framework of the Open Skies Treaty. The observation flight of maximum range of 1,300 kilometers [808 miles] will be carried out in the August 24-28 period," Sergei Ryzhkov told reporters.

    German experts will be present on the aircraft to control the use of surveillance equipment and adherence to provisions stipulated by the treaty, according to Ryzhkov.

    The Treaty on Open Skies was signed in 1992 in Helsinki and currently applies to 34 countries. The treaty establishes a regime of unarmed aerial observation flights over the entire territory of its participants.

    The treaty is designed to enhance mutual understanding and confidence by giving all participants a direct role in gathering information about areas of concern to them. Russia ratified this treaty on May 26, 2001.


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