Led coalition denies Syrian outpost closure part of a deal with Russia

Russia accuses US-backed rebels of hindering Syria IS fight

The crossing came almost two weeks after the Russia-backed Syrian troops breached a three-year siege on their troops in the city.

On Monday, elite Syrian forces crossed the river, Russia's defence ministry said.

Read the whole story from Reuters.

Syrian troops broke through the defenses of the Daesh (also knowns as ISIS or ISIL) terrorists on the outskirts of Deir ez-Zor and broke the three-year siege of the city on September 5.

They have liberated some 60 square kilometers [some 23 sq. miles] on the eastern bank but have encountered obstacles, he said.

He said SDF militants did not expect clashes with Syrian regime forces, but if fired upon "we will respond".

A senior aide to President Bashar al-Assad said the government would fight any force, including the USA -backed fighters, to recapture the entire country.

Syrian government forces crossed to the eastern bank of the Euphrates River from areas near the airport of Deir al-Zour, in what a monitoring group described as a "major advance" in their fight against the Islamic State.

Note that Deir ez-Zor is located South-East of the actual Syrian capital of ISIS, Raqqa, most of which, including the Old town area has already been captured from the rebels by the rebels, which is supported by the worldwide coalition led by the United States.

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After a previous clash between the two advancing forces near the city of Raqqa, the United States and Russian Federation agreed a "deconfliction zone" under which U.S. jets would not fly west of the Euphrates.

Pro-government forces fighting the so-called Islamic State (ISIS) crossed into areas east of the Euphrates river on Monday, the Financial Times reported.

That proximity likely contributed to Saturday's Russian airstrike that the coalition said wounded SDF fighters while US Special Operations Forces were present.

Coalition spokesman Colonel Ryan Dillon declined to say whether the Syrian army crossing the river violated the de-confliction line.

The Euphrates slices diagonally across the province, an oil-rich eastern region bordering Iraq.

The statement by the coalition Commander Paul E. Funk said that Russian forces had struck a target east of the Euphrates near Deir Ezzor city, causing injuries to coalition partner forces.

The military base is seen as a valuable asset for the Syrian army as it presses its campaign against Islamic State in Deir al-Zor province.

The UN estimates about 93,000 people were living in "extremely difficult" conditions in government-held parts of Deir Az Zor during ISIL's siege and were supplied by air drops to the base.

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