DAMASCUS – The Syrian army has declared the eastern suburbs of the capital Damascus "fully liberated" after the last group of gunmen left the town of Douma.
An army statement read by chief military spokesman Brig. Gen. Ali Mayhoub said Saturday that special units are clearing streets and squares of Douma from mines and explosives planted by rebels.
Douma is the largest town of the suburbs known as eastern Ghouta and its capture marks the biggest victory for President Bashar Assad's forces since the conflict began seven years ago.
The army said that troops discovered weapons factories, arms depots, tunnels and food storage places.
It added that the army is preparing eastern Ghouta for tens of thousands who were displaced over the past two months during a crushing government offensive to retake the area.