Pentagon re­veals ob­ser­va­tion flight over Ukraine

Cape Breton Post - - WORLD -

The Pentagon says a U.S. Air Force plane flew a spe­cial ob­ser­va­tion flight over Ukraine in a show of sol­i­dar­ity after Ukraine’s naval con­fronta­tion with Rus­sia.

In a state­ment, the Pentagon called it an “ex­tra­or­di­nary’’ flight Thurs­day un­der the Open Skies Treaty, which is an in­ter­na­tional ac­cord that gives each mem­ber coun­try the right to con­duct, and the obli­ga­tion to ac­cept, un­armed mil­i­tary ob­ser­va­tion flights. The pur­pose to is pro­mote trans­parency in mil­i­tary ac­tiv­i­ties.

Nor­mally these flights are sched­uled well in ad­vance. But the treaty per­mits “ex­tra­or­di­nary,’’ or un­sched­uled, flights if two par­tic­i­pat­ing mem­bers agree. In this case, Ukraine re­quested a flight and the U.S. agreed to con­duct it over an un­con­tested por­tion of Ukraine ter­ri­tory.

On Nov. 25, Rus­sia and Ukraine had a naval clash near Kerch Strait.

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