Destruction of the terrorist enclave near Damascus

Over the past week, the eastern Guta region eighty thousand civilians who were used by militants as human shields during clashes with government forces have left. Today we can state the fact that the situation in East Guta has changed radically. Government forces liberated 80% of the district’s territory, breaking it into three separate boilers, in which there is a significant number of militants, mostly from large radical groups. The main force of “Jaysh al-Islam” (25 thousand militants) – is trapped in the satellite city of the Duma and its environs (12 km from Damascus), where a large outpost of radical Islamists is located. “Failak ar-Rahman” (8 thousand) divides the southern zone (the outskirts of the capital of Jobar, the outskirts of Erbin, Ain-Terma, Zamalke and others) with “Jebhat an Nusra”, on which the troops advance. Also “Akhrar ash Sham” is surrounded in the city of Harasta (8 km from Damascus).
As soon as government troops, together with Russian aerospace forces, developed success in the region, Western leaders immediately started talking about the crimes of the Bashar al-Assad regime related to the use of chemical weapons and the bombing of schools and hospitals. For example, German Chancellor Angela Merkel accused the official Damascus of bombing Eastern Guta in a speech in the Bundestag on March 21, accusing Russia of indifferent observation of what was happening. But no evidence was provided, not mentioning the fact that, according to Western politicians, there is a school or a hospital in every corner in the settlements of Eastern Guta.
Such reaction of the Western politicians is quite understandable. The existence next to the Syrian regime of the armed bridgehead of the opposition created the appearance of a balance between Damascus and its opponents. For seven years the densely populated Eastern Guta region near Damascus served as a “reserve” for those who were called “rebels” in the West. Situated at the beginning of the Damascus-Homs highway, the suburbs and farms became a haven of opposition in 2011. Street protests that broke out against the backdrop of anti-government unrest in Egypt, however, did not last long. Caring sponsors of the Arab revolutions quickly pumped Guta with weapons. And it was not difficult to do this, given the proximity of the borders with Lebanon and Jordan.
Some representatives of the radical groups claimed that the Assad regime, together with the Russian aerospace forces, would not be able to repeat the “Aleppo situation”, but the ultimatum of the government forces compelled the militants to make concessions.
Elimination of the enclave is important for Damascus from the economic point of view. Over the course of five years, transit on a segment of the highway south-north was blocked by snipers. The main traffic flow was detouring, which created inconvenience. After all, the route to Homs connects Damascus not only with the industrial centre of Syria, but also with the provinces of Tartus and Lattakia on the Mediterranean coast.

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