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Second group of Russian sappers arrives in Syria to demine Palmyra — Defense Ministry

April 01, 11:34 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Besides sappers, the group includes Uran-6 robotic demining systems and armored vehicles equipped with suppressors of radio-controlled fuses and radio-controlled explosive devices
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© Dmitriy Rogulin/TASS, archive

MOSCOW, April 1. /TASS/. The second group of Russian sappers with Uran-6 robotic systems and armored vehicles has arrived at the Hmeimim air base in Syria, the Russian Defense Ministry’s press service said on Friday.

"The second group of specialists of the Russian Armed Forces’ international anti-mine center, Uran-6 robotic demining systems and armored vehicles equipped with suppressors of radio-controlled fuses and radio-controlled explosive devices have arrived at the Hmeimim aerodrome in the Syrian Arab Republic. The convoy of military engineers will soon march to the target area of demining infrastructure facilities and historical part of the city of Palmyra," the ministry said.

The Syrian army said at the end of March that it liberated the ancient city of Palmyra, a UNESCO world heritage site, with support from the Russian air group. Palmyra, an ancient city in Syria’s Homs province, was seized by gunmen of the Islamic State (a terrorist organization banned in Russia) in early summer 2015.

Russian Defense Ministry said on Thursday that first servicemen of the Russian Armed Forces’ international anti-mine center had arrived in Syria. A military-diplomatic source told TASS that around 100 specialists will take part in the operation. The demining will be completed in several months at the very least, the source added.

The head of the main operations directorate of the Russian General Staff, Sergey Rudskoy, told reporters on Thursday that over 180 hectares of architectural-historical and residential areas of Palmyra will have to be demined."Demining works are complicated by the fact that apart from standard industrially manufactured mines, terrorist groups left in Palmyra many hand-made explosive devices," he added reminding that special Uran-6 robotic systems will be used in the most difficult areas.

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