Syrian army retakes key oil field in Deir al-Zour



The Syrian army captured on Saturday the key oil field of Teym as part of a progress against the Islamic State (IS) in the countryside of Deir al-Zour province in eastern Syria, state news agency SANA reported.

The new achievement comes as part of the progress the army forces have made over the past 24 hours in reaching Deir al-Zour city from its main desert road.

The Teym oil field is only a few kilometers from the graveyard area at southern entrance of the city.

Earlier this week, the Syrian army and allied troops with the backing of Russian air fire lifted the three-year-old siege by IS on Deir al-Zour city through the Brigade 137 base in western Deir al-Zour.

Now the advancing troops are fighting to break the IS siege on the air base of Deir al-Zour.

The oil-rich province is so important for the Syrian army due to its location near Iraq and also the energy fields, all of which fell to IS during the war.

Teym field produced gas and oil and is one of the most important energy fields in Syria as it supports the electricity production to most Syrian cities.

Meanwhile, a military source told Xinhua that the Syrian forces also captured surrounding areas near the oil field, proceeding toward the graveyard area where the first incursion team is advancing, coming from Brigade 123.

He said the army has taken key hilltops close to the air base of Deir al-Zour.

Both advancing troops will meet in the graveyard area, to proceed to break the IS siege on Deir al-Zour air base, where Syrian soldiers and allied fighters have been besieged for three years.

Breaking the siege of the airport will largely play in the hands of the Syrian government forces in their push to eliminate the IS presence in the city before proceeding to the countryside where IS also controls large swathes of areas near the Iraqi border.

Since entering the city, the Syrian government has sent several truckloads of food and medicine to the city, where 93,000 civilians have been besieged for years.

The Russian air force played a significant role in supporting the ground forces of the Syrian army and allied fighters of Iranian-backed troops and tribesmen fighters.

For its part, Syria’s Foreign Ministry said Saturday that the end of IS near as the group is crumbling in Deir al-Zour.

The ministry urged for lifting the U.S. and European sanctions on Syria, saying that would help in the reconstruction process.