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    US, Russia Ready to Discuss Search and Rescue in Case Pilot Downed in Syria

    © AP Photo / Senior Airman Matthew Bruch, US Air Force
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    US, Russia ready to discuss search and rescue in Syria in case of downed pilot or aircraft in distress through the newly established channel, Pentagon said.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The United States and Russia are prepared to cooperate on search and rescue of pilots in Syria, US Department of Defense spokesperson Lt. Col. Michelle Baldanza told Sputnik on Tuesday.

    Earlier in the day, Washington and Moscow signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on the flight safety during their air operations in Syria.

    “We have not developed a new agreement with Russia regarding Search and Rescue. In the case of a downed pilot or aircraft in distress, both sides should contact each other via the newly established channel. Further action will be determined at the time of incident,” Baldanza explained, adding that no agreement has been developed on the issue.

    The Russian Defense Ministry said Tuesday that Moscow sees a need to establish operational cooperation with the United States on rescuing pilots in Syria.

    The MOU seeks to prevent air incidents between Russian and US aircraft, including drones, operating in the Syrian airspace.

    Also, Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook told reporters earlier that The United States and Russia will create a working group for discussions on issues related to implementing a memorandum of understanding  signed by Washington and Moscow.

    Russia has been launching precision airstrikes against ISIL positions in Syria at request of Syrian President Bashar Assad since September 30.

    A US-led coalition of some 60 nations has been bombing ISIL targets there for over a year without the backing of UN or the Syrian government.

    Related:

    Russian Weaponry in Syria Giving US Military Experts Goosebumps
    US, Russia to Create Working Group to Implement Syria Flights Memorandum
    US-Russia Deconfliction in Syria Obliges Russian Pilots to Speak English
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    aircraft, Pentagon, Syria, United States, Russia
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