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NBI suspends investigation into aircraft GPS-jamming

Finland's National Bureau of Investigation has suspended a preliminary probe into GPS interference affecting civilian aircraft and airspace violations during last spring and summer.

Finnairin lentokone taivaalla.
Disruptions were detected in aircraft positioning systems over parts of Finland in March 2022. Image: Henrietta Hassinen / Yle
Yle News

Yle's investigative journalism unit MOT reported earlier this week that Finnish air traffic was extensively disrupted in March last year following Russia's invasion of Ukraine in February.

For example, the seemingly deliberate jamming of GPS signals prevented aircraft from landing at Savonlinna airport, located in the east of Finland less than 100 km from the Russian border.

Finland's NBI announced on Friday that it has suspended a preliminary investigation into GPS interference affecting aircraft and airspace violations during the spring and summer of 2022 because available evidence has not led to identification of those responsible.

The director of the Helsinki-based European Centre of Excellence for Countering Hybrid Threats (Hybrid CoE), Jukka Savolainen, told Yle recently that incidents of interference with the GPS signals of Finnish aircraft are likely part of Russia's hybrid strategy and could even be training exercises for a state of war.

The NBI says it will reopen the investigation if new information comes to light.

The airspace violations under investigation concerned several incidents involving Russian civil aviation aircraft in Finnish airspace during last spring and summer. The National Bureau of Investigation was looking at these as possible violations of EU sanctions against Russia.

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