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Russia-US communications channels on mutual plans still in place - Russian senior diplomat

April 15, 16:40 updated at: April 15, 17:34 UTC+3

The United States, the UK and France said the strikes had been a response to an alleged chemical attack in Syria’s Douma

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Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov

© Aleksandr Shcherbak / TASS

MOSCOW, April 15. /TASS/. Communications channels between Russia and the United States making possible to get a clearer picture of what is going on are still in place, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov told TASS on Sunday.

"I don’t know how the American colleagues interpret the word ‘coordination,’" he said. "Channels for exchange of information, for communications that make it possible to get a better vision of what is going on, and, I hope, to have a clear picture of each other’s plans, these channels are still in place.

US Ambassador to Russian Jon Huntsman said earlier that the US side had contacted Russia prior to the strikes on Syria to minimize possible casualties among Russian nationals and Syrian civilians.

Strike on Syria

According to the Russian defense ministry, the missile strike on Syria’s military and civilian infrastructure facilities was delivered by US warplanes and naval ships in cooperation with the British and French air forces in the small hours on Saturday.

The ministry reported that a total of 103 cruise and air-to-surface missiles had been fired, 71 of them were shot down by Syria’s air defense units.

The United States, the UK and France said the strikes had been a response to an alleged chemical attack in Syria’s Douma.

Some non-governmental organizations, including White Helmets, claim that chemical weapons were used in Douma, Eastern Ghouta, on April 7. According to the statement uploaded to the organization’s website on April 8, chlorine bombs were dropped on the city to kill dozens and poison other local civilians who had to be brought to hospital.

The Russian foreign ministry dismissed that as fake news. The Russian defense ministry stated that White Helmets were an unreliable source, notorious for disseminating falsehoods. The Russian center for the reconciliation of conflicting parties on April 9 examined Douma to find no traces of chemical weapons.

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