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U.S and Russia continue to conduct “unarmed aerial observation flights with optical cameras” over each other’s territory

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WASHINGTON – Last week, the U.S. Department of State recognized that 1,000 observation flights have been conducted successfully under the Treaty on Open Skies. Since the Treaty entered into force on January 1, 2002, its 34 States Parties, including the United States and Russia, have conducted unarmed aerial observation flights with optical cameras over each other’s territory, building confidence mission by mission and helping to verify arms control treaties.

“We recognize the dedication and professionalism of our colleagues in the military services of all the States Parties, who have brought this Treaty to life through year-round flight operations,” the U.S. State Department said in a statement. “In conducting 1,000 missions, Open Skies teams have built confidence with each other and contributed to the overall peace and stability of the Euro-Atlantic community.

“The United States remains committed to the continued success and evolution of the Open Skies Treaty. As Acting Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security Rose Gottemoeller recently noted, the Treaty on Open Skies is one of the most wide-ranging international arms control efforts to date to promote openness and transparency in military forces and activities.”

Click here for more information on the Treaty on Open Skies.

Russian and American representatives sign an agreement, 5 August 2006, before a U.S. flight under the Open Skies Treaty over Russia. OSCE photo / Aug 05, 2006
Russian and American representatives sign an agreement, 5 August 2006, before a U.S. flight under the Open Skies Treaty over Russia.
OSCE photo / Aug 05, 2006
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