Page 2 - IFE08
Testing and training
For the on-site inspection regime to be operational after the Treaty’s entry into force, all procedures and methods developed for on-site inspections have to be applied on an experimental basis and equipment has to be tested. A series of so-called directed exercises have examined key aspects of the on-site inspection regime over the past couple of years. Experts received training on how to apply on-site inspection procedures and the use of specialized equipment.
First integrated exercise
In September 2008, the CTBTO will simulate an entire on-site inspection for the first time. The Integrated Field Exercise 2008 or IFE08 will last over five weeks and will include an initial phase of one week in Vienna and a full month of field activities in Kazakhstan. It will be the first time that major elements of an on-site inspection are tested in an integrated manner. Experts at the CTBTO hope to confirm the functionality of the OSI regime and identify any shortcomings that need to be addressed.
The Treaty prescribes in detail how an on-site inspection can be initiated, how it is to be conducted and how its results are to be reported. The upcoming integrated exercise will follow this regime as it is specified in the Treaty and will test it under realistic conditions. This will include an imaginary Member State lodging a request; preparations in Vienna to assemble an inspection team; the inspectors’ journey to Kazakhstan along with the shipment of 40 tonnes of equipment; on-site preparations and the conducting of the exercise; and finally, the submission of an inspection report.
Starting from an empty playing field
In order to create a real test case scenario, the inspectors will arrive at an inspection area which will be an empty playing field. Their initial activities will focus on establishing their own living quarters and work base – not an easy task for a group of 40 experts from around the world with a tight working schedule in an area that is hours away from the next human settlement.
Initial inspection period
Just one day after arrival at the inspection area, inspectors will begin the actual inspection, applying techniques identified by the Treaty as suitable for the initial phase of the inspection.
Based on the analysis of monitoring data, an inspection area comprising a maximum of 1000 square kilometres will be identified. This is still a fairly large area. Most of the techniques applicable in the initial inspection period will allow the inspectors to familiarize themselves with the territory and narrow down the area to be inspected.