10 Sep, 2017
“On September 9, following a massive air strike by the Russian Air Force, Syrian government forces overcame the fierce resistance of ISIL terrorists in the area surrounding an air field to the south-east of Deir ez-Zor,” the ministry said in a statement.
Earlier on Saturday, Syrian state TV reported that the Teym oilfield was recaptured from Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) terrorists. This eastern part of Syria is an oil-rich area.
The forces now aim to retake the remaining parts of Deir ez-Zor from the terrorists. The army is said to be on the verge of fully liberating the city, which is one of the last IS strongholds in Syria.
The breaking of the blockade happened earlier this week, after a series of successful operations carried out by the Syrian Army with the support of the Russian Air Force.
Islamic State ammunition warehouses were identified by the Syrian Air Force during the operation, Syrian Army General Ahmad Sulaiman told RT, saying that the military also “listened in to meetings in which the terrorists planned attacks inside and around Deir ez-Zor.”
“With the help of Russian air power, the Syrian Air Force struck these places ahead of the arrival of Syrian government troops. This weakened ISIL’s ability to attack and to call in reinforcements from Raqqa and Palmyra,” the Syrian Army commander said.
He added that the Syrian forces “fought fierce battles,” as the jihadists “had planted improvised explosive devices and car bombs all around.”
The Syrian army breakthrough in Deir ez-Zor rings the death knell for depleted IS forces, Syrian journalist Wael Hmeidy told RT.
“ISIL has been defeated in Iraq and they are no longer in the Syrian desert. Deir ez-Zor is the only stronghold, so the group is almost being eliminated,” he argued.
The journalist went on to note that Deir ez-Zor was once a self-proclaimed jihadists’ capital just like Raqqa or Iraq’s Mosul but the local population “stood up to ISIL and fought against them.
Meanwhile, humanitarian convoys started to arrive in Deir ez-Zor for the first time since the siege was broken. For the past three years, locals have depended on air drops from a military air field controlled by one of the Syrian Army’s brigades.
“People in Deir ez-Zor were on the brink of starvation. We were desperate for food and water to reach the city, that was all we wanted. And thank God, help has now arrived,” a local man told RT.
“We cannot describe how relieved we are. People were dying,” another resident among those queuing for food, water, and other vital supplies said.
— RT (@RT_com) September 7, 2017
Russia also joined the humanitarian efforts and sent convoys to the newly liberated parts of the city. On Saturday, bottled drinking water, food, medicine, and other vital supplies from Russia were distributed, the Russian Center for Reconciliation of Opposing Sides in Syria reported.
According to the Russian military, efforts are also being made to facilitate the return of refugees to their homes, as infrastructure is being restored in the areas freed from the terrorists. Moscow is actively participating to help the Syrians speed up the work to restore hospitals, schools, bakeries, as well as water and energy supplies.
In June, IS controlled around a quarter of the country. But in the past three months, the terrorist group has lost around half of those territories. At the moment, it still partly holds the Deir ez-Zor province, as well as territories near Hama and Homs in western Syria.
MEANWHILE: Dessert Rats Flee For Cover
US Airlifts ISIS Commanders and Fighters from Deir Ezzor, Syria
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)
ISIS and other terrorist groups couldn’t exist without foreign backing. America, NATO, Israel and their rogue allies provide weapons, munitions, and other material support.
Media scoundrels suppress what’s going on, pretending US war on terror is real. It’s a colossal hoax.
Washington and its allies deploy terrorist forces to locations where they want them used, shifting them to various battleground areas, including back-and-forth cross-border between Syria and Iraq.
On Wednesday, US-led helicopters airlifted around 20 ISIS field commanders, along with rank-and-file fighters from Deir Ezzor – after Syrian and allied forces broke their three-year siege.
According to Syrian military and media reports, heliborne operations in Deir Ezzor’s Kal al-Mala region and near al-Rahba shifted ISIS forces for use elsewhere in Syria.
Similar operations occurred earlier in Iraq and Syria, much like how armies deploy their troops where they’re strategically needed.
Separately, Russia delivered humanitarian aid to liberated Deir Ezzor areas, including food, water, medical supplies, mobile generators, and other essential goods, according to its Defense Ministry.
Russia’s Chief of General Staff Gen. Sergey Rudskoy said “(o)ver the past two weeks, the Syrian government troops with the support of the Russian Aerospace Forces have achieved important advances and dealt a decisive blow to Daesh terrorists in Syria’s east and center” – calling it one of the most important achievements in over six years of war, a major defeat for ISIS.
Smashing the terrorist group entirely won’t end war in Syria. Thousands of al-Nusra and likeminded fighters remain to be eliminated.