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US rejected Russia’s proposal on Syria consultation center in Amman — defense ministry

February 05, 2016, 11:24 UTC+3

Russia’s Defense Ministry called on Western colleagues to set up a consultation center on cooperation in Syria in Jordan’s Amman

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Deputy Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov

Deputy Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov

© Yuri Mashkov/TASS

MOSCOW, February 5. /TASS/. Washington has rejected Moscow’s proposal for Western colleagues to set up a consultation center on cooperation in Syria in Jordan’s Amman, Deputy Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov said on Friday.

"We proposed to Americans, in the first place, and other Western countries to create a joint consultation center to solve issues of cooperation. We suggested that the possible location will be Amman," Antonov said, adding that the proposal was rejected.

Russia’s defense minister suggested having a phone conversation with Pentagon’s chief Ashton Carter on January 19. "We were given to understand that such a conversation is inadvisable," he added.

Moscow has repeatedly invited Washington to have a "broad spectrum of cooperation" including exchanging data on targets in Syria, establishing communications channels and joint steps on rescuing pilots in case of accidents, the deputy defense minister said.

However, the Pentagon has rejected the proposals on the broad cooperation only limiting to a memorandum on flights security over Syria. Russia’s Defense Ministry signed the document considering it as a possible starting point in establishing full-scale coordination of efforts in the fight against international terrorism.

Russia coordinates fight against terrorists in Syria with other countries. Moscow has exchanged data with France. Russia, Iraq, Syria and Iran have also set up a joint information center in Baghdad. Russia’s Defense Ministry said cooperation with Israel, Jordan and some other countries has been also established.

Russia’s Aerospace Forces have been conducting an operation in Syria against the Islamic State and other terrorist groups since September 30, 2015 at the request from Syrian President Bashar Assad. The US-led coalition has been delivering airstrikes against the gunmen in Syria and Iraq since 2014.

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