Russian Military Found Dozens of Hidden Small Arms Pieces in Syria

© REUTERS / Omar SanadikiA Russian soldier stands guard near a Syrian national flag
A Russian soldier stands guard near a Syrian national flag - Sputnik International
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MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Russian servicemen discovered this month three arms caches belonging to militants in Syria that contained more than 250 pieces of small arms, head of the Russian Defense Ministry's Center for Syrian Reconciliation Lt. Gen. Sergei Solomatin said on Monday.

"During January 2019, thanks to the efforts made by the Reconciliation Center and the Russian military police, three caches with weapons and ammunition have been discovered, abandoned by illegal armed groups", Solomatin told a briefing, adding that the caches contained more than 250 pieces of small arms, over 50,000 pieces of ammunition and more than 300 anti-personnel and anti-tank mines made overseas.

The seized weapons were handed over to the Syrian security services, Solomatin noted.

Meanwhile, Solomatin also said Monday that militants committed ceasefire violations in the Syrian city of Aleppo and in the Hama province over the past 24 hours.

READ MORE: Continuous Terrorist Provocations Threaten Russian Air Base in Idlib — Moscow

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"Over the past 24 hours, in the Idlib de-escalation zone, militants shelled settlements… in the province of Hama as well as the area near a research center in the city of Aleppo", Solomatin told a briefing.

While the Syrian government has regained control over most of the country's territories, Idlib remains a stronghold of insurgency, where over 10 militant groups operate, including the National Front for the Liberation of Syria and Jabhat al-Nusra* terrorist organization.

Since 2017, Russia, along with Turkey and Iran, is a guarantor of the ceasefire in Syria. During the most intense periods of the civil war, the Russian armed forces provided military assistance to Damascus, while now, given the significant de-escalation of the conflict, they are also focused on regular humanitarian operations, post-war reconstruction and the return of refugees.

READ MORE: Syria Will Not Tolerate Militants in Idlib, US Base in At Tanf — Baath Party

*Jabhat al-Nusra, a terrorist group banned in Russia and a wide number of other countries.

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