WASHINGTON, June 4. /TASS/. The lines of communication between the heads of military departments of Russia and the United States remain open despite the tensions amid the Ukrainian conflict, a Pentagon official has said.
"The high-level lines of communication have always remained open," a representative of the US Department of Defence told TASS, referring to the military sphere.
He declined to comment on whether Russia should expect an official proposal of Washington on restoring joint cooperation of the armed forces.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with the International Review program on the Rossiya-24 TV channel last week that Moscow was ready to resume military and information exchange contacts with the United States if the US was ready for that.
"When Americans are telling us, like, for example, US Secretary of State John Kerry at a recent meeting in Sochi, that it would be not bad to resume contacts between the militaries, exchange information to prevent unintended dangerous situations, we answer: ‘For God’s sake! If you are ready, ask us and we will respond’," Lavrov said.
"It was not us who shut down the Presidential Commission, which comprised 21 working groups on all thinkable areas of interstate communication. It worked very effectively and presented annual reports to the presidents. It was not us who severed contacts in other spheres either," Lavrov said.
Bilateral military contacts between Russia and the US were frozen amid the Ukrainian crisis in March last year.