NATO spends $1.7 bn on surveillance system

May 21st, 2012 - 8:44 am ICT by IANS  

Chicago, May 21 (IANS) NATO and Northrop Grumman Corporation, a European defence technology provider, Sunday signed a $1.7-billion contract here to set up a ground surveillance system.

The contract, signed during NATO conference, included the procurement of five Block 40 Global Hawk unmanned aircraft equipped with an advanced ground surveillance radar sensor as well as the associated command and control base stations.

The system, which will be operated and maintained by NATO, will enable the alliance to perform persistent surveillance over the situation on the ground and provide support for a broad range of missions, including protecting ground forces, border security, counterterrorism, humanitarian assistance and natural disaster relief.

This system has been a major acquisition priority for NATO and “the real-time long-endurance intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance that this will provide will be valuable to NATO forces around the world,” said Otfried Wohlleben, program manager of NATO Alliance Ground Surveillance Management Agency (NAGSMA).

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