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Briefing by Chief of the Main Operational Directorate of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces Colonel General Sergei Rudskoy

Within the last two weeks, the Syrian government troops supported by the Russian Aerospace Forces have achieved significant success and completely defeated the ISIS groupings in eastern and central Syria.

In total, the Syrian Arab Army has liberated 4,800 square kilometers from terrorists. Terrorists have been pushed away from 59 settlements.

The government troops have defeated terrorist groupings near Deir ez-Zor. This battle is superior in its significance and scale to all the previous winnings.

The Syrian people were waiting for this victory for more than three years.

On September 5, according to the plan of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, the Admiral Essen fired Kalibr sea-based cruise missiles from eastern part of the Mediterranean Sea to ensure the momentum the Syrian Army offensive towards Deir ez-Zor. The strike has hit most important objects of insurgents.

An armored vehicle plant, ammo and munitions storage, command and communication centres as well as a large camp of insurgents have been eliminated.

It is to be noted that illegal armed groups of insurgents from Russia and CIS countries operated there.

Russian ASF aircraft conducted more than 100 combat sorties to support offensive of SAA. Each aircraft carried out 3-4 sorties a day.

Yesterday, the Syrian troops unblocked Deir ez-Zor, which had been besieged and in the centre of territories controlled by the ISIS.

Convoy with humanitarian aid entered the city after the Syrian Army did.

Today, humanitarian convoys with food products, medicaments, and drinking water are arriving in Deir ez-Zor. Citizens did not receive enough goods and suffered inhuman hardships.

Moreover, the Syrian troops have liberated Uqayribat, which had been turned into a stronghold by insurgents.

In fact, Uqayribat features two towns: overground and underground. The ISIS has concentrated significant supplies full of ammo, munitions, medicaments, and food products in order to be ready for a sustained siege.

Due to three levels of encirclement, the terrorist grouping has been divided. Now, it is being eliminated.

Speech of the Commander of the Russian force grouping in the Syrian Arab Republic Colonel General Sergei Surovikin

In course of the offensive operation, units of the Syrian Arab Army commanded by General Suheil al-Hassan have penetrated the staggered defence of the ISIS grouping and unblocked Deir ez-Zor from the north-western direction. For the last three days, average momentum of SAA offensive has reached 15-20 kilometers a day.

A part of Syrian troops carried out a deception operation in order to deceive the enemy and hide the main strike direction. Terrorists used about 50 car bombs, 28 of which were eliminated by assault units of the government troops at long distances. All counterattacks of insurgents have been repelled. The ISIS grouping has suffered significant losses because of actions by artillery and aircraft.

In course of meeting offensive of units of General Suheil al-Hassan and defenders of Deir ez-Zor commanded by General Zahreddine, the insurgents’ defence has been penetrated at the area of 3 kilometers in width.

Moreover, another force grouping of SAA has reached the city from the direction of al-Sukhnah. The SAA grouping has launched offensive on Deir ez-Zor.

Pro-government troops are pushing their offensive on Deir ez-Zor from the south along the Euphrates.

Therefore, main forces of insurgents, which had been redeployed from Mosul, Raqqah, and other regions, have been encircled. The last stronghold of terrorists in Syria is being eliminated.

In order to support offensive of SAA, the Russian ASF aviation has been conducting missile and bomb strikes on ISIS objects day and night. The number of sorties carried out by the Russian aircraft has reached 100 a day.

Within the last two weeks, Russian aircraft have conducted 1,417 combat sorties. They have made 2,687 aviation strikes on command centres, camps, and manpower concentrations. 83 pieces of armored hardware, more than 200 automobiles with large-caliber machine guns, MLRS, artillery and air defence guns, and more than 1,200 terrorists have been eliminated.

Russian Su-34 and Su-35 aircraft have been engaging detected armored hardware, including tanks, automobile columns with ammunition, and artillery on firing positions in order to disrupt actions of terrorists and deprive them of regrouping the forces.

Units of the 4th tank army have defeated the ISIS main forces near Uqayribat. Terrorists have lost opportunities to regroup their formations as well as to receive ammunition and supplies.

The ISIS forces used unprecedented number of suicide bombers. Every day, 15-25 suicide bombers and 4-5 car bombs were eliminated. All approaches to the town used to be mined.

Near Uqayribat, the Russian aircraft have made 329 aviation strikes and eliminated 27 pieces of armored vehicles, 48 pick-up trucks with large-caliber armament, and more than 1,000 insurgents have been eliminated.  

Currently, SAA is eliminating ISIS illegal armed groups in the regions located to the west and north from Uqayribat.

The Russian Federation is proceeding with sparing no effort to stabilize situation in liberated areas of the Syrian Arab Republic.

Three de-escalation zones are functioning successfully: in the south of Syria, in the Eastern Ghouta area, and in the north of the Homs province. The Russian Military Police units are ensuring cease-fire regime compliance.

As a result of the accords achieved by the Russian Centre for reconciliation officers and opposition representatives, the Homs-Hama strategic highway has been unlocked. This facilitates south-north transportation and promotes economic revival of the country.

Besides to prevent provocations and possible conflicts between the FSA units in the north of Syria and the Kurdish militia, the deconfliction zone in the Tell Rifaat area was established under the auspices of the Russian Centre for reconciliation.

The SAA units replaced the Kurdish armed formations that had left this region. To preclude possible provocations, and maintain the cease-fire regime in the deconfliction zone, the Russian Military Police unit has been deployed in the area.

The ceasefire regime in the area has enabled the refugees to return home. As a result, more than 400 people have got back to the city of Tell Rifaat, hundreds of families are planning to follow them in the near future.

The Russian military are proceeding with humanitarian aid to the people in liberated areas of Syria.

For the last two weeks, the Centre for reconciliation of opposing sides have conducted 15 humanitarian actions. The Syrian people have derived food and medical supplies as well as the bare necessities weighing more than 29 tones.

Representatives of 26 settlements have joined the ceasefire agreement increasing the total number up to 2,233.

The Russian military medics have provided medical aid to more than 1,800 citizens. In total about 53,000 people have received professional assistance from the Russian specialists.

Ceasefire regime compliance by all sides, swift stabilizing of the peaceful life on the territory of Syria demonstrating once again the efficiency of the Astana format talks.

The sixth session to gather the representatives of the Syrian government and opposition in Astana is to take place on September 13-15. It is planned to adopt documents governing de-escalation control forces in all the four zones including the Idlib one as well as containing provisions on the Joint Coordination Centre.

In conclusion, it is to be stressed that the Russian Federation exerts any effort to restore peace in the Syrian Arab Republic refraining from undue violation, and sparing people’s lives.

At the same time the operation on defeating the ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra on the territory of Syria will keep its pace.

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