SYRIAN, RUSSIAN TROOPS CRUSH IS | Syrian government troops supported by Russian air force have inflicted a “crushing defeat” on Islamic State’s (IS) militants in eastern and central Syria in the last two weeks, the Russian military said yesterday.
Syrian armed forces have cleared an area of 4 800 square kilometres of militants, and knocked them out of 59 settlements, Chief of the Main Operational Directorate of the Russian General Staff Sergei Rudskoy told a news briefing.
After the Syrian city of Deir al-Zour was deblocked on Tuesday, a column with humanitarian aid entered the city, Rudskoy said. In addition, the Syrian troops have completely liberated the town of Akerbat, a terrorist stronghold in the western-central province of Hama, he said.
In the last two weeks, Russian warplanes made 1 417 sorties, inflicting 2 687 strikes against IS command posts, camps and concentrations of militants, the Russian Armed Forces’ group commander in Syria Sergei Surovikin noted at the briefing.
He said more than 1 200 IS fighters were killed in the operations masterminded by the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces and the Syrian government troops command.