DEIR EZZOR, Syria – On Sunday, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) began the operation in western Deir Ezzor, targeting the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL/IS/Daesh) sleeper cells near the town of Al-Shoula.
The next day, on Monday, the Syrian Arab Army and its ally, the National Defense Forces (NDF), reportedly moved several units to the Iraqi border region, where they began conducting a combined operation inside the southeastern part of the Deir Ezzor Governorate.
According to a military source in the Deir Ezzor Governorate, the Syrian Arab Army was conducting this operation at the same time as the Iraqi Armed Forces.
The Iraqi Armed Forces launched their new operation against the Islamic State sleeper cells in the Al-Anbar, Salaheddine, and Nineveh governorates on Sunday.
The operation has already produced successful results for the Iraqi Armed Forces, as their troops have managed to destroy a number of terrorist hideouts near the Syrian border.
Syria and Iraq are part of a broader anti-ISIS coalition, which also includes Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah. The Russia–Syria–Iran–Iraq coalition (RSII coalition), also referred to as 4+1 (in which the “plus one” refers to Hezbollah of Lebanon), is a joint military, intelligence-sharing and security cooperation between opponents of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (also known as ISIS/ISIL/IS/Daesh) with operation headquarters in Syria’s Damascus and Iraq’s Green Zone in Baghdad.
It was formed as a consequence of an agreement reached at the end of September 2015 between Russian Federation, the Islamic Republic of Iran, Republic of Iraq, the Syrian Arab Republic, and Hezbollah to help and cooperate in collecting information about Daesh (ISIS/ISIL/IS), with the aim of combatting the advances of the group, according to the statement issued by the Iraqi Joint Operations Command. The coalition bore the brunt of the struggle against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, with most of the ISIS-controlled territories in Iraq and Syria being liberated since 2015 onwards.