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Russian Defence Ministry: Washington unprepared for wide cooperation in Syria

October 17, 2015, 7:43 UTC+3 BEIJING
"We have proposed far wider cooperation. Washington is still unprepared for it," Antonov said
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© ITAR-TASS / Sergei Karpov

BEIJING, October 17. /TASS/. Russia has invited the United States to enter into wide cooperation over Syria, but Washington still looks unprepared for that, Russian Deputy Defence Minister Anatoly Antonov told the 6th Xiangshan Security Forum on Saturday.

"We are interested in cooperation with all countries without an exception. We established a direct communication line with Turkey. We’ve held consultations with Israel and stepped up contacts with the Persian Gulf states. We are in talks with the US partners over an agreement on ensuring the safety of flights over Syria. But that is not enough. We have proposed far wider cooperation. Washington is still unprepared for it," Antonov said.

Within the framework of interaction with countries in the Middle East a joint information centre has been created in Baghdad to coordinate action among the staffs of the Iranian, Iraqi, Syrian and Russian armed forces.

"We are constantly in touch with the Syrian army. All of our strikes are surgical and delivered with precision exclusively against Islamic State infrastructures. We have not hit any other military or civilian facilities, let alone communities and mosques, contrary to what some western media have been claiming," Antonov said.

Russia has been dealing pinpoint strikes against Islamic State targets in Syria at the request of Syria’s President Bashar Assad. The fleet of Russia’s combat aircraft at Syria’s Khmeimim air base numbers more than 50 helicopters and planes.

Last week several ships of the Russian Navy in the land-locked Caspian Sea hundreds of miles away from Syria attacked the Islamic State with long-range cruise missiles.

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