June 19, 2017 / 4:39 PM / 9 months ago

U.S. working to restore Syria 'deconfliction' link with Russia

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States is working to restore a “deconfliction” communications line with Russia meant to avoid an accidental clash over Syria, the top U.S. general said on Monday, after Moscow cut it off after the U.S. downing of a Syrian military jet on Sunday.

FILE PHOTO: Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff U.S. Marine Corps General Joseph Dunford testifies at a Senate Appropriations Defense Subcommittee hearing on the defense budget Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., March 22, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Marine General Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said there was still communications between a U.S. air operations centre in Qatar and Russian forces on the ground in Syria but added: “We’ll work diplomatically and military in the coming hours to reestablish deconfliction.”

(This version of the story was refiled to correct the spelling of ‘clash’ in paragraph one)

Reporting by Phil Stewart; Editing by James Dalgleish

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