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27 septembre 2013 5 27 /09 /septembre /2013 11:40
NATO, Russia Complete ‘Vigilant Skies’ Anti-Terror Drills

NATO and Russian fighter jets escort an aircraft during a Vigilant Skies exercise Photo NATO-Russia Council



MOSCOW, September 27 (RIA Novosti)


NATO and Russia have successfully completed a live three-day joint exercise to test their capacity to counter terrorist threats in the skies over NATO and Russian territory.


The exercise, dubbed Vigilant Skies-2013, involved fighter aircraft from Turkish, Polish and Russian air forces as well as air traffic controllers from the NATO-Russia Council Cooperative Airspace Initiative (NRC CAI).


“This year’s scenario involved two separate air terrorism incidents involving the hijacking of civilian aircraft in Turkish, Russian and Polish airspace by terrorists on board the planes,” NATO said in a statement on its website on Thursday.


“All incidents were successfully resolved after NATO and Russian air traffic controllers coordinated Allied and Russian military authorities to scramble fighter jets to escort the aircraft to safe landings,” the statement said.


The CAI was launched at the first NATO-Russia Council summit in Rome in May 2002, and the CAI network was declared operational in December 2011 following the successful completion of the first Vigilant Skies drills earlier that year.


According to NATO, the aim of the CAI is “to operate and further develop a capability for reciprocal air traffic information exchange and coordination of air security incidents which pose a terrorist threat.”


The CAI network currently consists of four units in NATO nations and four units in Russia. The exchange of air traffic information is conducted through CAI coordination centers located in Warsaw and Moscow.

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19 septembre 2013 4 19 /09 /septembre /2013 11:40
Russia, NATO to Hold Joint Military Drills in September

MOSCOW, September 19 (RIA Novosti)


Russia and NATO will hold joint military exercises in late September, the NATO-Russia Council (NRC) has reported.


The readiness of the NRC’s air traffic monitoring system, the Cooperative Airspace Initiative (CAI), to detect and respond to aircraft hijacking will be tested during live drills dubbed “Vigilant Skies”, on September 23-27, the council said in a statement posted on its website earlier this month.


The first part of the drills envisions the following scenario: a simulated ‘renegade’ civilian aircraft will take off in Poland and move in the direction of Russia’s westernmost exclave of Kaliningrad.


Air traffic controllers in Warsaw and Moscow will jointly use the CAI system to identify the plane as a potential source of threat and send Russian and Polish fighters to intercept and escort the ‘renegade’ plane back to the airfield.


The exercises’ second part will be held over the Black Sea. Turkish and Russian air traffic controllers and fighter jets will be engaged in joint work to identify, intercept and escort the renegade aircraft, and neutralize the potential threat from such a situation to population centers, the NRC’s statement said.


The CAI covers three NRC regions: the geographic spaces between Norway and Russia, Poland and Russia, and between Turkey and Russia, with two central coordination centers located in Moscow and Warsaw.

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