MOSCOW, August 2. /TASS/. Syrian Army backed by Russia’s Aerospace Forces fully destroyed militants of the Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra (terror groups, outlawed in Russia) and restored control over the As-Suwayda, the Daraa and the Quneitra Governorates, chief of the Russian General Staff’s main operations directorate, Colonel-General Sergey Rudskoi, said.
"During the operation, the Syrian Armed Forces backed by the Russian Aerospace Forces fully eliminated the armed gangs of ISIL (former name of the Islamic State group) and Jabhat al-Nusra and established control over the territory of the As-Suwayda, the Daraa and the Quneitra Governorates," Rudskoi said, calling the operation "unique."
According to the general, the IS and al-Nusra units, hiding under the guise of the moderate opposition, controlled more than 55% of the southern de-escalation zone. They conducted combat actions jointly with the moderate opposition to expand their control of territories. Meanwhile, civilians, who were trapped in this situation, suffered the shortage of food, medicines and drinking water, he noted.
The general stressed that the humanitarian assistance sent by international organizations was apprehended by the terrorists, while the civilians did not receive the cargo, and any attempts by the local citizens to protect their rights and property were fiercely punished by the terrorists, even during public executions.
The terrorists made several attempts to seize the territory under control of the Syrian government forces, while "the Russian servicemen of military police, who are on duty on the checkpoints along the disengagement line, were subjected to real danger," Rudskoi said.