NewsRussia's GPS jamming raises safety concerns for Baltic air traffic

Russia's GPS jamming raises safety concerns for Baltic air traffic

Swedes struggle with GPS disruptions. / Swedish ship. Stock photo.
Swedes struggle with GPS disruptions. / Swedish ship. Stock photo.
Images source: © East News | Wojciech Strozyk/REPORTER
6:33 AM EDT, March 25, 2024

Previously, disturbances in the satellite navigation system (GPS) over the Baltic Sea area were rare. Recently, however, Scandinavian media have reported a significant uptick in these incidents, affecting civil aviation and attributing the disruptions to Russia.

Swedish newspaper "Expressen" reports that GPS signal jamming now occurs daily along the eastern NATO border, emphasizing that these disturbances jeopardize the safety of civilian aircraft.

For instance, on March 15 and 16, GPS disruptions impacted more than 850 flights in the Baltic Sea region, with the majority being passenger flights.

Russia accused of disabling GPS signals in the Baltic region

It has been reported that "massive GPS signal disruptions in the Baltic Sea region might be part of Russia's hybrid warfare strategy." The Swedes have frequently reported abrupt malfunctions in the system. The situation has escalated to the point that, according to a spokesperson for the Swedish Armed Forces, Russia has notably enhanced its capabilities to disable GPS.

"Russia has honed such skills," states Mikael Agren, a spokesperson, to "Expressen", highlighting regular disruptions, including those over southern Sweden and the northern part of Poland.

Finland is facing a similar issue, with the country experiencing significant GPS disruptions for a week, especially in the Gulf of Finland area.

"GPS disturbances bring various inconveniences to society," explains Professor Laura Ruotsalainen from the University of Helsinki to "Iltalehti".

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Source: "Expressen", "Iltalehti"

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