Russian General killed in IS shelling in Syria: defense ministry

Updated 2017-09-25 18:01:05 Xinhua
A Hezbollah fighter fires at a position of the Islamic State (IS) group in Syria's Qalamoun region, on Aug. 26, 2017. (Xinhua/Ammar Safarjalani)

A Hezbollah fighter fires at a position of the Islamic State (IS) group in Syria's Qalamoun region, on Aug. 26, 2017. (Xinhua/Ammar Safarjalani)

A Russian lieutenant general was killed in a shelling launched by Islamic State (IS) terrorists near the city of Deir al-Zour in northeastern Syria, the Russian Defense Ministry said Sunday.

"As a result of the sudden IS mortar shelling, Lt. Gen. Valery Asapov sustained a fatal injury," Russia's Sputnik news agency cited a ministry statement as saying.

According to the document, Asapov was a member of the group of Russian military advisers working with Syrian commanders during the operation aimed at the the liberation of Deir al-Zour.

The deceased serviceman will receive a state award posthumously, the statement said.

On Thursday, the ministry said that the Syrian government troops continued their offensive operations to destroy the last stronghold of the IS terrorist group in the vicinity of Deir al-Zour, after breaking a three-year blockade of the city earlier this month.

About 85 percent of the city is free from the IS and the whole city could be liberated within a week, it added.

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