Russia has officially informed the United States via a special communications channel that Russian forces will strike immediately US-backed forces if they attack or shell Syrian or Russian task forces operating near Deir Ezzor city, Russia Defense Ministry Spokesman Igor Konashenkov said on Thursday.

Konashenkov emphaseized that “any attempts of shelling from the areas where the militants of the Syrian Democratic Forces are based will be immediately curbed.” Russian forces will supress “firing points in these areas” using “all means of destruction”.

The general added that 85% of Deir Ezzor city is liberated and Syrian forces will fully liberate it in the coming week.

Since early September, the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have repeatedly claimed on an official level that the SDF would not allow Syrian governent forces to cross the Euphrates River and is ready to fight Russians and Syrians if it was needed. However, it seems that making statements and attacking assault forces assisted by the Russians are two very different things. Syrian government forces have already crossed the river and now are developing momentum against ISIS on its eastern bank.

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