The Open Skies Agreement, also known as the Open Skies Treaty, is a treaty that was signed in 1992 between the United States and Russia. The purpose of the treaty was to allow unarmed aerial surveillance flights over the territory of the participating countries in order to promote transparency and build trust between them.
Under the Open Skies Agreement, each participating country can fly over any other participating country`s territory, taking pictures or videos that can be used for surveillance purposes. The flights are conducted by specially equipped aircraft that are certified to ensure compliance with the treaty, and the flights are usually scheduled in advance for maximum transparency.
The Open Skies Agreement is designed to promote peace and security by helping countries to trust each other more. By allowing surveillance flights over each other`s territories, countries can better understand what their neighbors are doing and plan accordingly. This helps to prevent misunderstandings and mistakes that could lead to conflict.
In addition to promoting transparency and building trust, the Open Skies Agreement also has economic benefits. By allowing airlines to operate more freely within participating countries, the Agreement has helped to reduce airfares and increase tourism. This has had a positive impact on local economies, especially in developing countries that rely on tourism for income.
There are currently 34 countries that have ratified the Open Skies Agreement, including most of Europe, the United States, Canada, Russia, and several countries in Central Asia. The Agreement has been hailed as a success, with many experts citing it as an example of successful international cooperation.
Overall, the Open Skies Agreement is an important international treaty that promotes transparency, trust, and economic growth. By allowing participating countries to conduct surveillance flights over each other`s territories, the Agreement has helped to promote peace and security around the world.