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MOSCOW, March 2. /TASS/. Terrorists’ days in Syria are numbered after the operation to retake Palmyra, the city will not return under militants’ control for a second time, a senior parliamentarian from the State Duma lower house of parliament said on Thursday.
"We can say definitely now that with the fall of such a city as Palmyra, days of the terrorist organizations on the long-suffering territory of the Syrian Arab Republic are numbered," first deputy of the Duma defense committee Andrei Krasov told TASS.
Russia’s Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu reported to President Vladimir Putin earlier in the day that the Syrian government troops had completed their operation to seize Palmyra with the support of the Russian air task force.
According to the lawmaker, "terrorists are fleeing the Syrian territory en masse, trying to dissolve, conceal their bloody deeds". "As to when a turning point in the operation came, this is of course when the Syrian troops jointly with the Russian Aerospace Forces seized Aleppo," Krasov said.
"As for Palmyra, it is a city of cultural and historical value, having a global significance," he stressed. "This success of the Syrian Armed Forces and the Russian Aerospace Troops can hardly be overestimated," the politician said. "Yet another city is freed from the ‘back death’ that has spread across the Middle East," he added.
Militants of the Islamic State terrorist grouping (outlawed in Russia) seized Palmyra in May 2015 and in late March 2016 the Syrian government troops liberated the city with the support of the Russian air task force. In December last year, Palmyra was recaptured by extremists.