US, Russian military chiefs discuss Syria, defence issues
09 Jun 2018, 02:13
Top U.S. and Russian military commanders on Friday met in Helsinki and discussed various bilateral and global issues.
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General of USA Joseph F. Dunford and Russian Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov discussed the deconfliction of Coalition and Russian operations in Syria, said a statement of US Joint Staff Spokesperson Col. Patrick S. Ryder.
The statement published in the US Joint Chiefs of Staff website also said that the military chiefs exchanged views on the state of U.S.-Russia military relations and the current international security situation in Europe and other key regions.
The U.S. and Russian militaries have undertaken efforts to improve operational safety and strategic stability.
“Both leaders recognize the importance of maintaining regular communication to avoid miscalculation and to promote transparency and deconfliction in areas where our militaries are operating in close proximity,” said the statement.
In accordance with past practice, both generals have agreed to keep the details of their conversations private, the statement added.
After the meeting, both the defence bosses met President Sauli Niinistö at the evening separately, said a press release issued by the president office.
Terming the meeting as positive and effective, Niinistö expressed his satisfaction to both the military chiefs over hosting such event.
They also met their Finnish counterpart General Jarmo Lindberg separately.
News agency Xinhua adds : Commander of the Finnish defense forces General Jarmo Lindberg met Gerasimov. He had met Dunford on Thursday. TASS quoted the Russian Defense Ministry as saying Gerasinov and Lindberg had "a thorough discussion of the European security situation."
Lindberg and Gerasimov also "emphasized the importance of a direct telephone line established last November, which helps build mutual trust and increase transparency amid growing military activities in the Baltic Sea area." The line connects Russian National Defense Management Center and the Finnish Defense Forces.