MOSCOW, September 4. /TASS/. Over 80 sorties were performed by Russian warplanes to back the Syrian government troops’ offensive towards the city of Deir ez-Zor, the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement on Monday, adding that more than 70 terrorists had been killed.
"In order to provide air support to the government troops’ offensive towards Deir ez-Zor, Russian warplanes made more than 80 sorties. The airstrikes destroyed two tanks, three armored infantry carriers and more than ten all-terrain vehicles equipped with heavy weapons. Losses among terrorists amounted to more than 70 men," the statement reads.
The Russian Defense Ministry added that Syrian government troops, supported by the Russian Aerospace Force, continued the offensive towards the city of Deir ez-Zor.
"In eastern Syria, the government troops supported by the Russian Aerospace Force continue the offensive towards the city of Deir ez-Zor". "The Syrian troops under the command of general Suheil al-Hassan, active in the northern part of the Raqqa province, have advanced eight kilometers in the past 24 hours, seizing two strategic heights," the document says.
According to the Russian Defense Ministry, the Syrian troops advancing from the direction of the Al-Sukhnah town have driven terrorists of the Islamic State terror group (outlawed in Russia) from their positions along the highway connecting Palmyra and Deir ez-Zor.
The Russian Defense Ministry pointed out that the Islamic State’s defeat in the Deir ez-Zor area, and the end of the city’s siege, would deal a strategic blow to the terror group.
Meanwhile, the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) reported that the Syrian air force has delivered an airstrike on a terrorist headquarters located in the Howeika district in the western part of Deir ez-Zor. As a result, nine field commanders were killed.
Eye witnesses say that the militants’ defensive positions on the city’s outskirts have been destroyed. On the western front, government forces and militia units have another ten kilometers to cover to join the troops besieged at the 137th mechanized brigade’s base. In the south, the troops are storming the Al-Shula and Kabajib settlements.
Provincial Governor Mohammed Ibrahim Samra told the SANA news agency that the Syrian government forces would reach Deir ez-Zor within several hours.