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UK wants to establish operational communications with Russian Armed Forces — ministry

December 11, 2015, 10:11 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The initiative would aim at preventing incidents at sea and in airspace
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British Royal Air Force fighter jets return to RAF Akrotiri base after their first mission since the parliamentary vote to undertake air strikes in Syria

British Royal Air Force fighter jets return to RAF Akrotiri base after their first mission since the parliamentary vote to undertake air strikes in Syria

© EPA/STAVROS KONIOTIS

MOSCOW, December 10 /TASS/. The British Ministry of Defense wants to establish operational communications with Russian colleagues to prevent incidents at sea and in airspace, Peter Watkins, director for security policy and military operations at the British Ministry of Defense, told Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov at a meeting in Moscow on Thursday.

"The British side stressed it was interested in establishing operational communications between the respective units of the Russian and British Armed Forces with an aim to prevent incidents at sea and in airspace," the Russian Defense Ministry said in its statement.

The Russian Defense Ministry confirms that it is ready to resume military cooperation with Britain that came to a halt on the initiative of the British Ministry of Defense in 2014 in a measure that will suit London, Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov told Watkins.

Watkins, in turn, presented his condolences over the destruction of a Russian warplane and the death of Russian servicemen in Syria.

Antonov said that international terrorism was a common threat, which could be removed only through collective efforts of all the countries concerned.

The Russian deputy defense minister informed the British side about the Russian military operation in Syria and explained Russian approaches to the prevention of incidents and flight safety guarantees during maneuvers in the Syrian airspace.

A delegation of the British Ministry of Defense has been invited to attend the 5th Moscow International Security Conference (on international terrorism) slated for April 26-28, 2016.

The Russian side also provided necessary explanations regarding the format and dates of the Army 2016 forum and the International Army Games 2016.

"The meeting passed in a constructive atmosphere," the Russian Defense Ministry said.

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