Monday, January 23
US military is 'not coordinating airstrikes with Russia in Syria', Pentagon says
Sputnik has published, without comment, a short report on the Pentagon denial. Here are links to the two earlier Sputnik reports today on the coordination/joint strikes
I have no idea which side is telling the truth.
By Spencer Ackerman
Monday 23 January 2017 14.19 EST
Last modified on Monday 23 January 2017 14.40 EST
The Pentagon has flatly denied a Russian government claim that both nations’ warplanes conducted a joint combat mission in Syria.
On Monday, the Russian defense ministry claimed to have received coordinates of Islamic State positions via a US-Russian communications channel, and that two jets from the US-led coalition participated in a strike alongside Russian aircraft.
But the Pentagon, now helmed by Trump’s appointee James Mattis, issued a round denial of the Russian account.
“The Department of Defense is not coordinating airstrikes with the Russian military in Syria,” said spokesman Eric Pahon, who added that he was not aware of any coalition member aiding Russia in this instance.
The White House, however, signaled it was open in principle to joint military strikes with Russia in Syria.
The press secretary, Sean Spicer, said Trump would “work with any country that shares our interest in defeating Isis”, saying the inclination applied to “Russia or anyone else”.