More than 1,000 terrorists have entered the territory of Syria from the two provinces of Iraq where the US-led coalition is carrying out its anti-Daesh operation, the Russian General Staff has said.
Chief of the Main Operational Directorate of the Russian General Staff Col. Gen. Sergey Rudskoy reported that terrorists have taken tanks, equipment and artillery rocket systems with them while coming to Syria from the provinces of Al Anbar and Nineveh.
They took part in a massive offensive with a goal of advancing deep into the Syrian territory as part of a group of 3,000 militants.
"As a result of the decisive actions of government troops with the support of the Russian Aerospace Forces, the terrorists failed to achieve their goals, the Daesh counter-offensive was repelled, and the main forces of the terrorists were destroyed," Rudskoy said at a briefing.
Attack on Syrian Troops Near al-Tanf
Rudskoy also said that some 450 terrorists have carried out an attack on the Syrian armed forces from the area near al Tanf that is controlled by the US forces. He added that the attack was successfully repelled by the Syrian armed forces with the support of Russian aviation.
The small groups of terrorists managed to block parts of the road connecting al Sukhna and Deir ez-Zor, he added, stressing that the areas were liberated by Syrian troops.
Syrian Army's Offensive in Deir ez-Zor Province
Commenting on the Syrian troops' operation in the Deir ez-Zor province, Rudskoy said they have fully liberated the right bank of the Euphrates river to the north-west and west of the city of Deir ez-Zor.
"The offensive of the Syrian troops near Deir ez-Zor is developing successfully. Assault units under General Hasan Sukhel with the support of Russian air forces have completely liberated the right bank of the Euphrates to the north-west and west of the city, establishing control over an area of 4,600 square kilometers [1,776 square miles]," Rudskoy said.
Rudskoy also said that Russian air support was crucial to the success of Syrian troops. He said that during the past week the aircraft of the Russian Aerospace Forces carried out 383 sorties near Deir ez-Zor and hit 993 targets of Daesh terrorists.
"Special attention has been paid to the destruction of the militant leaders. Since the beginning of October, 31 militant leaders have been killed," he added.
The Russian official added that Russia had carried out three large-scale attacks with the use of cruise missiles against Daesh facilities that resulted in the destruction of 37 facilities of terrorists, such as arms depots and communication centers.
Russian sappers have so far demined a total of 299 hectares around Deir ez-Zor, 838 buildings and 87 kilometers (54 miles) of roads, clearing some 24,000 mines and improvised explosive devices.