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Syrian army, Allied Forces Break ISIL Siege on Deir Ezzor Air Base

10 September, 2017, 09:22 | Author: Priscilla Morrison
  • A street in Deir ez-Zor

Oil-rich Deir Ezzor province borders Iraq and is a strategic prize for both the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and Russian-supported government troops.

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".

Syrian army soldiers, backed by allied forces, have managed to break a almost three-year siege imposed by ISIL terrorists on a strategic airbase in the eastern city of Deir Ezzor.

Deir Ezzor province is the last one in Syria still largely under militant control.

Pro-government forces are advancing toward a military airbase that is still under siege by the militant group.

Meanwhile, Russia's Defense Ministry said Friday it had killed four Daesh leaders, including one it described as the group's war minister, in an airstrike outside Deir ez-Zor city.

Regarding hostility with Syrian government forces who are also battling IS in Deir al-Zor, the DMC head said he did not predict clashes, but added the SDF forces would "respond" if fired at. US officials say about 300 ISIL jihadists were initially aboard, along with a similar number of civilians, likely family members.

The U.S. -backed fighters are up against a huge challenge to reach Deir el-Zour, especially while they are still fighting to liberate Raqqa from IS.

"To ensure the safe de-escalation of efforts to defeat ISIS, coalition surveillance aircraft departed the adjacent airspace at the request of Russian official during their assault on Deir Ezzor", the US Central Command said in a statement. It said he had been evacuated to the Al-Muhasan area, 20 kilometers southeast of Deir el-Zour.

"According to confirmed data, among the killed fighters are four influential field commanders", the ministry said.

This week, the Syrian army reached the western front of Deir Ezzor - ending ISIS' siege of the 137th Brigade Base, a garrison that has long relied on airdrops to survive.

"We are not coordinating with the regime or with Russian Federation".

He added that MaT and other USA -backed forces were prepared to attack from the town of al-Shaddadi, about 85 kilometers northeast of Deir el-Zour, but warned that safety corridors to allow civilians to flee from the city needed to be opened in advance to keep them from getting caught in the crossfire.



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