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Raqqa on brink of epidemic — Russian defense minister

December 21, 2017, 17:52 UTC+3

On October 20, the Syrian Democratic Forces announced the total liberation of Raqqa from militants

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MOSCOW, December 21. /TASS/. The Syrian city of Raqqa is on the brink of an epidemic, Russian Defense Minister Army General Sergei Shoigu said on Thursday.

"The city [Raqqa] is on the brink of an epidemic," he said at a trilateral meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Shoigu and United Nations Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura.

The Syrian Democratic Forces, supported by the US-led coalition, launched an operation to free Raqqa on June 6. Terrorists were surrounded in the city center on September 21 but maintained a fierce resistance. Most civilians left the city before the final stage of the operation. On October 20, the Syrian Democratic Forces announced the total liberation of Raqqa from militants.

Russia’s Defense Ministry compared the US-led coalition’s bombings of Raqqa to the 1945 destruction of the German city of Dresden.

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