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Russia to use Uran-6 systems to clear mines in Syria’s Palmyra — Defense Ministry

A canine squad with mine-sniffing dogs has joined the unit, apart from combat engineer teams, the ministry reports

MOSCOW, March 30. /TASS/. Russian servicemen will use Uran-6 robotized systems to clear mines in the Syrian town of Palmyra recently liberated from militants of the Islamic State terrorist organization, the press office of Russia’s Defense Ministry said on Wednesday.

The personnel of a combined unit of the international mine-clearing center have gone through instructions and practical training in the Moscow Region before going to the Khmeimim airbase in Syria from the Chkalovsky aerodrome, the ministry said.

"A canine squad with mine-sniffing dogs has joined the unit, apart from combat engineer teams. Modern robotized systems Uran-6 will be used for mine-clearing," the ministry added.

Combat engineer teams are equipped with the most advanced demining and protection systems and have also received autonomous power supply generators, mobile kitchen trailers, containers and tents for personnel accommodation, the Defense Ministry’s press office said.

As was reported earlier, two groups of Russian combat engineers went to Syria on March 29 and 30.

A military and diplomatic source earlier told TASS that about 100 Russian specialists equipped with robots would be involved in the mine-clearing operation.

Mine-clearing will take at least several months and the Russian personnel will have to clear not only the town’s historical part but also the residential quarters and approaches to Palmyra from mines.

The Syrian army reported about liberating Palmyra on Sunday. The operation to liberate the ancient town on the UNESCO World Heritage list was conducted with the support of Russian combat aircraft. Militants of the Islamic State terrorist organization (outlawed in Russia) seized Palmyra in May 2015.