The Syrian Army has been fighting Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) militants as part of an operation to break the siege of the eastern city of Deir ez-Zor, which has remained encircled by the terrorist for more than two years.
Ruptly’s footage from the scene showed armed troops, rockets being fired and huge explosions on the outskirts of the city.
Some 125,000 people reportedly remain in the city under siege since May 2015.
Despite frequent mortar attacks, the use of car bombs and suicide bombers, IS was never able to take full control of the city.
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However, the humanitarian situation in Deir ez-Zor remains dire as supplies to the population can only be delivered by air.
The liberation of Deir ez-Zor will have a “huge” effect on both the morale and financial stability of the Syrian state, Ammar Waqqaf, a Middle East expert, told RT.
“Civilians [in the besieged city] that have refused to submit to ISIS will, and they’re in unison with the Syrian army. If they are liberated… to the rest of the country this is a huge psychological advantage,” he said.
“Deir ez-Zor is also the main producer of oil and gas in Syria… If the Syrian state would be able to restore and operate those oil fields that this will also be a huge economical boost,” he added.