No ISIS to be left in 2018
Syria’s government forces will restore control over its eastern border before the end of this year, the chairman of the Russian State Duma Defense Committee Vladimir Shamanov said, noting that by the same date the terrorist organization ISIS (banned in Russia) will be also eliminated.
"We expect that by the end of this year the government troops will restore control over the eastern border of Syria and ISIS won’t exist anymore as an organized military structure," he said.
According to Shamanov,"in general, one can consider" key tasks of Russia’s military campaign in Syria have have been almost accomplished," Gazeta.ru reports, recalling that earlier a possible reduction of the military contingent in Syria was reported.
The President of the National Strategy Institute, Mikhail Remizov, speaking to Vestnik Kavkaza, noted that the defeat of ISIS still does not mean the stabilization of Syria and Iraq. "I recall that the emergence of ISIS was not the cause, but the consequence of a whole tangle of regional contradictions between states and religious groups that has not been untangled to this day. The war against ISIS has obscured some of these contradictions, but now things will go back to the way they were. Other conflicts remain in force and, winning the war against ISIS, we do not win peace in Syria and Iraq. Of course, Damascus will have stronger negotiation positions, which may provide greater effectiveness of meetings in Astana and Geneva, but the possibility of reaching united Syria with a reformed system of government and a gradual process of political transformation is still under big question," he explained.
According to him, the most likely situation in the near future is the preservation of the status quo of control zones. "This means the de facto partition of Syria, which importance is still to be assessed in economic terms. A significant part of the territory where the natural resources of Syria are located is not controlled by Damascus. At the same time, it is possible that the system of de-escalation zones will be canceled, as it was a temporary solution, which was necessary to suppress the ISIS, but then other directions of the Syrian conflict will be unfrozen," Mikhail Remizov expects.