Syrian forces in Damascus
Syrian forces in Damascus

Syria frees southern Damascus from IS

ANI | Updated: May 21, 2018 20:47 IST

Damascus [Syria], May 21 (ANI): After a period of seven years, the Syrian army on Monday said that it has pushed out the last fighters of the dreaded Islamic State (IS) terror group from al-Hajar al-Aswad district in southern Damascus, according to the Syrian state TV.
The Syrian army and its allies have been fighting IS terrorists for the last few weeks to reclaim a tiny enclave in al-Hajar al-Aswad and the adjacent Yarmouk Palestinian refugee camp, the last area outside government control in or around Damascus, reported Al-Jazeera.
Before launching its anti-IS push in Yarmouk, the Syrian government forces managed to clear out other rebels from the area with military drives and evacuation deals, according to state TV.
Yarmouk, the largest Palestinian camp in Syria, was under "crippling government siege" since 2012, a year after the civil war in the country began.
Earlier today, the Syrian army resumed its offensive attack to reclaim the area in southern Damascus, after it evacuated a group of civilians residing there.
According to state TV broadcast, airstrikes fired by pro-Syrian government forces "were targeting the last terrorist remnants" in the area after reporting earlier that a temporary humanitarian ceasefire had been in place since Sunday night.
Activists claimed that the IS terrorists were leaving a key territory under them in eastern Syria as part of a ceasefire deal. However, the Syrian state media reported that an encounter was underway between the terrorists and the Syrian army.
Under a deal, IS terrorists and their families were evacuated from an area on the Lebanese-Syrian border on one side, and Syrian government and Hezbollah on the other, inviting criticism from all over the world.
Subsequently, the United States-led coalition started launching airstrikes against the terror group in the war-ravaged country since 2014, killing thousands of civilians and displacing several others.
Syria has been embroiled in a civil war since 2011. Protesters have long been demanding the resignation of President Bashar-al Assad over his autocratic rule. (ANI)