May 23, 2024

Estonia’s Foreign Minister Margus Tsahkna laid the blame for the jamming of GPS signals over the Baltic squarely with Russia on Thursday, following weeks of interference that has disrupted air travel in the region.

Estonia has been seeing an increase in targeted disruptions to GPS satellite navigation recently.

The authorities of the Baltic Sea state say the GPS signal interference is being transmitted from Russian’s territory, and the problem has worsened since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

“We know that Russia has been jamming the GPS signal since the beginning of its attack on Ukraine. Over the last year and a half, this problem has become very serious in our region,” Tshanka told Estonian television, according to a radio report on Thursday.

He said Latvia, Lithuania, Finland, Norway, Sweden and Poland were also struggling due to the interference, alongside Estonia.

“If we look at Russia’s activities, this attack on GPS is part of a hybrid action that disrupts our lives and breaks all kinds of international agreements,” Tsahkna said.

According to a convention to which Russia is a party, no one should interfere with GPS, he said. However, there is plenty of evidence that the interference is coming from near St Petersburg, Pskov and Kaliningrad, he said, without providing any further details.

Two Finnair aircraft had to be diverted after GPS interference prevented them from landing in Estonia’s second largest city, Tartu, late last week.

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