MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Russia's operation has helped to change the facts on the ground. The Syrian Arab Army, assisted by Russian warplanes and local allies, has managed to turn the tide of war by making gains against Daesh, al-Nusra Front and other terrorist groups in key provinces.
“Thanks to the Russia Aerospace Forces, the Syrian Army gained strategic initiative. Terrorist groups suffered considerable losses,” Putin said.
On March 15, Vladimir Putin ordered the Russian forces to withdarw from Syria. According to the president, the Ministry of Defense and the armed forces as a whole has achieved its goal.
Moscow will, however, maintain a military presence. Putin also indicated that Russian forces will remain at the port of Tartus and Hmeymim airbase in Latakia.