Russia’s Defense Ministry says the country’s aircraft have eliminated more than 200 Daesh terrorists on their way to the eastern Syrian city of Dayr al-Zawr.
The operation also destroyed around 20 SUVs laden with large-caliber weapons and mortars, as well as armored vehicles, including tanks, the Ministry said in a statement on Monday.
The city contains relatively large concentrations of the Takfiri group’s terrorists and is subject to offensives by both the Syrian Army and its allies, and the Russian warplanes.
The Ministry said the city was now witnessing “international terrorists…trying to regroup and equip their last base in Syria.”
“The defeat of ISIS (Daesh) in the Dayr al-Zawr region will be a strategic defeat for the international terrorist group in the Syrian Arab Republic,” the statement said.
Earlier in the month, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said if the group lost the city, it would potentially mean it had suffered an ultimate defeat.
“This is perhaps the main point at the Euphrates, which will in many ways indicate the end of the fight against ISIS,” he said.
Dayr al-Zawr, however, still contains some 125,000 civilians, a fact that could slow down the military operations targeting the city.
Bouthaina Shaaban, the political and media adviser to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, said in an interview on Friday that the six-year-old foreign-backed militancy in her country was nearly over as foreign states had cut their backing for Takfiri terrorist groups.
On Sunday, Assad said the assistance provided by main allies, Russia, Iran, and Lebanon’s Hezbollah resistance movement to the country’s counter-terrorism operations, had enabled the Syrian Army to make battlefield gains and reduce the burden of war.