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The United States withdrew from the Open Skies Convention, which strengthened European security
The United States withdrew from the Open Skies Convention, which strengthened European security

The United States withdrew from the Open Skies Convention, which strengthened European security

The 1992 treaty authorized 34 member states to conduct short-range, unarmed, and reconnaissance flights across other countries to gather information on their military forces and activities.

The Trump administration has cited Russia’s restrictions on Open Skies as a reason for its withdrawal from the treaty, accusing Moscow of restricting flights near Kaliningrad, an area between Poland and Lithuania where the Russian military reserves.

The United States has also accused Russia of denying flights within 6.2 miles of the Georgia-Russia border, and of denying previously approved flights on key Russian military exercises.

“Russia did not abide by the treaty, so until they do, we will withdraw,” Trump told reporters outside the White House in May.

However, America’s European allies value the treaty, as it gives them the ability to collect aerial data that they do not need to access outside of the treaty.

within Long May statement Explaining the United States’ decision to withdraw from the agreement, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the United States understands Europe still values ​​the treaty, saying it is one of the reasons why the United States was in the treaty at a time when Moscow was not fully committed.

The treaty gives US allies and partners without sophisticated satellite storage capabilities – all member states have access to flight imagery.

Pentagon officials have told CNN that the U.S. military intends to share some intelligence and intelligence from assets such as satellites with European allies to help compensate for any significant data loss from the Open Skies shutdown.

The Trump administration pulled out of the Interim Nuclear Forces Treaty at a time when what the United States and NATO members said was a violation of Russia’s agreement over the delivery of a medium-range ballistic missile.

However, while America’s European allies backed the decision to withdraw from the INF, there was no such backlash for the Trump administration’s decision to leave the Open Skies. Eleven member countries Also issued a statement in May Expresses “regret” over the Trump administration’s decision, which has also met with opposition from U.S. lawmakers from both sides.