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US Navy Would Welcome Opportunity to Engage With Russian Counterparts, Vice Admiral Says

© AP Photo / Zenaida RothIn this photo released by the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Curtis Wilbur (DDG 54) conducts routine operations in the Taiwan Strait, May 18, 2021.
In this photo released by the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Curtis Wilbur (DDG 54) conducts routine operations in the Taiwan Strait, May 18, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 03.08.2021
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WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The United States Navy would welcome any chance to positively engage with its Russian military counterparts on a range of areas in the Arctic, US Second Fleet Commander, Vice Admiral Andrew Lewis, told Sputnik on the sidelines of the 2021 Sea-Air-Space Conference and Exposition on Monday.
"We would welcome any opportunity to engage positively with our military counterparts," Lewis said when asked about US-Russia collaboration in the Arctic.
Areas of cooperation, Lewis added, could include exploration of oil and gas and precious metals, search and rescue and safety at sea, along with professional behavior. For example, he added, the professional and cooperative nature between Russia and Norway is the reason why that area has the most fertile fishing grounds in the world.
There are many more areas the United States and Russia can target for collaboration for the greater good in the Arctic although current cooperation is at an adequate level, Lewis said.
"I think we have adequate cooperation, but [there are] we can cooperate more in which to be more respectful, but also for the greater good," Lewis said. "It’s [current cooperation] acceptable, but I would have ambitions for more."
Lewis said a couple years ago while operating in the Baltics in and around Russian forces it was professional and there were never any problems or issues.
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