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article imageUS and Russian MRAP vehicles collide in Syria

By Ken Hanly     Aug 26, 2020 in Politics
On Tuesday, some in the media were speculating on what would happen should US and Russian forces have a confrontation in Syria. On Wednesday a US and a Russian vehicle collided near Dayrick Syria causing mild injuries to four US soldiers.
The incident
According to reports, a US Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected All-Terrain Vehicle (MRAP) waa blocking a road when a Russian MRAP convoy attempted to pass through. A video of the incident showed one rather minor-looking collision.
Details of the incident are still emerging. The Russians have not reported any casualties as yet. The injured US soldiers are said to have mild concussion-like symptoms. US officials have described the collision as "side-swiping" but the video shows little contact between the two vehicles.
US claims Russia violate deescalation protocols
US officials suggested that Russia had violated deescalation protocols. Russia has on the whole not publicly commented on the incident. As the forces of both countries are active in northeastern Syria confrontations like this are always a risk.
National Security Council spokesperson John Ulyot in a statement to Task and Purpose said: "Unsafe and unprofessional actions like this represent a breach of deconfliction protocols, committed to by the United States and Russia in December 2019. The Coalition and the United States do not seek escalation with any national military forces, but U.S. forces always retain the inherent right and obligation to defend themselves from hostile acts."
Ulyot also said that the US took action to deescalate the situation after the collision: “To deescalate the situation, the coalition patrol departed the area. Unsafe and unprofessional actions like this represent a breach of deconfliction protocols, committed to by the United States and Russia in December 2019.”
Possibly senior officials from both countries discussed the incident no doubt with a view to ensuring that such a confrontation does not happen again: "Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, spoke by phone on Wednesday to Gen. Valery Gerasimov, chief of the Russian General Staff. No details of the conversation were provided. Often the top U.S. and Russian military leaders do not publicly release the contents of their phone calls, so it's not clear if the incident was discussed."
More about Russia US relations, Russia in Syria, Syrian civil war
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