WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Officers from the US-led coalition fighting the Daesh terror group (banned in numerous countries) met face-to-face with Russian military officials this week to discuss operations in Syria’s Deir ez-Zor in a bid to prevent any inadvertent fire incidents, Operation Inherent Resolve spokesperson Col. Ryan Dillon said on Thursday.
"Coalition and Russian military officials met face-to-face this week to adjust and expand deconfliction measures. The discussions emphasized the need to share operational graphics and locations to ensure the prevention of accidental targeting or other possible frictions that would distract from defeating ISIS [Daesh]," Dillon said.
He added that the coalition would continue to deconflict with the Russians "at every level" in order to ensure that both sides remain focused on fighting the Islamic State.
"The face-to-face meeting between the Russians and coalition military officials happened in the region. It was nearby [the fighting in Deir ez-Zor]," Dillon said, refusing to reveal the exact place that the two sides met this week, saying, "There may be follow-up meetings, perhaps in the same location."
Dillon emphasized that the meeting was aimed at preventing the two sides from inadvertently firing on each other and to keep the focus on defeating Daesh.
The sides discussed expanding deconfliction efforts as military operations move south into the Middle Euphrates River Valley in Syria, Operation Inherent Resolve spokesperson Col. Ryan Dillon said during a press briefing on Thursday.
"Part of the discussions is the expansion of this deconfliction line as it moves further on down the Middle Euphrates River Valley," Dillon said when asked about recent talks between coalition officers and their Russian counterparts.
Earlier, Russian Defense Ministry Spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov claimed that Syrian government troops have been shelled twice from areas on the western bank of the Euphrates controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the US military.
The spokesman said SDF militants approaching Deir ez-Zor from the north were joining the battle unhindered on orders from the Daesh terrorists.