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An international Air Transport Agreement now is in effect between the Republic of the Marshall Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia. It paves the way for Air Marshalls to begin scheduled passenger and cargo services to the FSM.

The agreement was signed by transportation officials from both countries during ceremonies in the FSM capital of Palikir last week.

The agreement permits both scheduled services and non-traffic stops, for such purposes as refueling. Both nations also granted the other the right to conduct non-stop international air transportation across its territory, by designated FSM and Marshallese airlines.

Service by Air Marshalls to the FSM now is in the planning stage. Currently, the Federated States of Micronesia has no national airline, with international and internal services provided primarily by Continental Air Micronesia.

In signing the air agreement, the RMI and FSM officials noted that it may be affected by the terms of the US-Marshall Islands Compact of Free Association relating to Kwajalein Atoll.

Kwajalein is home to a major US military missile testing base.

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