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The Russian “spy plane” flying over Washington, D.C. was both legal and planned

CNN’s Jon Ostrower reported on Wednesday, August 9 that a Russian spy plane flew over the U.S. Capitol, the Pentagon and even the CIA.


With President Trump out of town and the nation’s eyes on North Korea, Politico suggested that the Russians may be trying to troll the president:

Calm down

The flyover was planned under the Treaty on Open Skies, a 15-year old agreement between the U.S., Russia and 33 other nations.

The 2002 Open Skies Treaty established a regime of unarmed aerial observation flights over the territories of its signatories. It’s designed to give all parties a “direct role in gathering information through aerial imaging on military forces and activities of concern to them.”

U.S. Department of State

Members of the U.S. Air Force were on board the plane.

And the Capitol Police announced the flyover hours earlier.

Crew members check the equipment in the nose of an An-26 aircraft used by the Hungarian Air Force to fly observation missions under the Open Skies Treaty, July 2004. Image: OSCE/CC BY-ND 3.0

Whether the flyover of a giant chicken was part of the treaty has not been adequately explained.

(Fact check: It wasn’t.)

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