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Russia gives U.S. part of downed spy plane

Published Oct. 6, 2005

Russia has given the United States a part of a U.S. spy plane shot down in 1960 as a sign of continuing cooperation despite the recent arrest of an alleged Russian spy in the CIA.

The small piece of a U-2 spy plane flown by Francis Gary Powers, who was captured and later released, was exchanged Wednesday in a U.S.-Russian commission investigating the fates of U.S. servicemen in the Soviet Union since World War II.

Last year, the U.S. gave to Russia a ship's bell from a former Soviet attack submarine that sank accidentally in the Pacific in 1968 and that was retrieved later by the United States.

Commission officials said their POW-MIA search would not be slowed by the arrest of Aldrich Ames, the accused Moscow mole inside the CIA. "Our cooperation on the joint commission continues unabated," said Malcom Toon, chairman of the POW-MIA commission with Russian General Dmitry Volkogonov.

Toon said the mounted piece of black and yellow metal from Powers' U-2 had been presented to him earlier Wednesday by Volkogonov. It was from one of 10 such planes shot down by the Soviet Union during the Cold War.

There was no evidence, they said at the close of the eighth meeting of the 2-year-old commission, that any prisoners from World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam War or Cold War were being held against their will in the former Soviet Union. They said they would continue looking for evidence or remains of any U.S. prisoners.