Russia Diverts US Military Inspectors’ Plane Due to Bad Weather

CHITA, October 31 (RIA Novosti) – A plane with US military inspectors, heading to an airport in Russia’s southern Siberia under the international Open Skies treaty, had to divert to another location because of bad weather on Thursday, a police source said.

The Open Skies Treaty, which entered into force on January 1, 2002, established a regime of unarmed aerial observation flights over the territories of its 34 member states to promote openness and transparency of military forces and activities. Russia ratified the treaty in May 2001.

The plane with military inspectors, performing an observation flight above Russia in line with the treaty, was heading to Ulan-Ude, the capital of the Republic of Buryatia. However, the crew was told to divert to Chita in the neighboring Transbaikal Territory because of dense fog in Ulan-Ude.

“Ulan-Ude did not permit the plane to land because of weather conditions, so the crew requested a landing in Chita. [The plane] landed and is still here,” a Chita police source said.

The source did not say whether it was a civil or military aircraft.

The plane’s crew is currently undergoing migration and border control, he said.


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