BEIRUT (Sputnik) — The Syrian army is preparing to launch an attack on Daesh terrorist group positions 5 kilometers west of Deir ez-Zor, a source told Sputnik Monday.
"The Syrian army and its allies have taken over an asphalt plant in the western suburbs of Deir ez-Zor, and are now preparing to liberate the barracks of the 137th brigade five kilometers west of the city," the source said.
Earlier in the day, another source told Sputnik that the Syrian army was engaged in an offensive on Deir ez-Zor in two directions, west and south-west. Local media report that the forward units of the Syrian forces are involved in a fight with Daesh militants less than two miles from the city.
Deir ez-Zor, located on the shores of the Euphrates River to the northeast of Damascus, and a military airfield near the city have been besieged by Daesh for over three years, with food and ammunition only being delivered by air, while helicopters from the city of Qamishli have been evacuating the wounded and delivering essential supplies to the city's population.
The lifting of the siege of Deir ez-Zor will lead to the complete defeat of the most combat-effective formations of the Daesh terrorist group in Syria, the chief of the Russian General Staff's Main Operational Directorate said earlier.