USA withdraws from Open Skies Treaty

USA withdraws from Open Skies Treaty

After 6 months of announcing its intention in the withdrawal from Open Skies Treaty, USA has officially done so on Sunday alarming other countries, as the Treaty’s main purpose was to create a foundation for mutual trust since it allows countries to monitor each other’s armies.

Open Skies Treaty, which was negotiated in 1992, allowed the 34 participating countries including the United States and Russia to conduct unarmed surveillance flights over each other’s territory.

Although Moscow has shown more interest in conducting air surveillance over European countries than in doing so for the United States, which means that USA’s withdrawal will not rid the Treaty of its worth immediately.

Earlier this month, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov demanded written confirmations from the rest of NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) that any data they collect from now on will not be shared with the United States, and the Russian official also said that US bases in Europe will not be excluded from Russia’s surveillance missions. According to the State Department, this agreement was negotiated in order to “avoid any surprises in a cooperative manner.”

However, US officials have expressed their belief that Moscow has already violated the Open Skies Treaty by banning reconnaissance flights over certain regions including the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad and the border with Georgia, and they have also accused Russia of preventing surveillance flights over Russian military exercises.

“Russia didn’t adhere to the treaty, so until they adhere, we will pull out,” Trump stated.

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