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US Should Explore New Contacts With Russia to Avoid 'Great Power War', Chiefs of Staff Head Says

© AP Photo / J. Scott ApplewhiteChairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Mark Milley speaks during a ceremony at the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial to honor the 184 people killed in the 2001 terrorist attack on the Pentagon, in Washington, Friday Sept. 11, 2020
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Mark Milley speaks during a ceremony at the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial to honor the 184 people killed in the 2001 terrorist attack on the Pentagon, in Washington, Friday Sept. 11, 2020 - Sputnik International, 1920, 24.09.2021
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WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The United States should explore the possibility of expanding new contacts with Russia, including potentially allowing observers at drills, US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Mark Milley said.
Milley and his Russian counterpart, General Valery Gerasimov, held an in-person meeting in Finland on Wednesday at which the sides discussed issues of mutual interest.

"We might not do it, but we should at least take a look at it", Milley said when asked by reporters about the possibility of allowing observers at exercises and other changes.

According to Milley, Washington might look into allowing the military chiefs to form stronger ties with their Russian counterparts, a practice that is currently prohibited.

"We need to put in place policies and procedures to make sure that we increase certainty, to reduce uncertainty, increase trust to reduce distrust, increase stability to reduce instability in order to avoid miscalculation and reduce the possibility of great power war. That's a fundamental thing that we should try to do, and I am going to try to do it", Milley said.

Milley's comments come on the heels of reports that he feared former US President Trump might start a war with China at the end of his tenure, prompting him to reach out to Chinese counterparts in October and January to assure Beijing that an attack from the United States was not imminent.
Milley resisted accusations of treason and insisted that his calls were "routine" and "perfectly within the duties and responsibilities," adding that they were made "to reassure both allies and adversaries in this case in order to ensure strategic stability."
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