13 Dec 2017 15:02

Military doctors depart Syria

HMEIMIM. Dec 13 (Interfax) - Russian military doctors are returning from Syria to their permanent basing locations.

"We were ready to stay here through January, we brought a Christmas tree, we were planned on seeing the New Year in here. They've told us to leave early and we are leaving," Denis Popov, commander of the Russian Armed Forces' special-purpose medical unit, told reporters.

The Russian doctors have provided medical assistance to the people of Syria, helped restore medical infrastructure, supplied hospitals and medical points with medications, and worked on sharing experience and training and re-training Syrian doctors for two years. This helped their Syrian colleagues to gradually begin providing independent healthcare services.

According to the Russian Defense Ministry, over 200 Russian military doctors have worked in Syria since the beginning of the military operation. They have assisted at least 66,000 Syrians.

On December 11, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the withdrawal of the Russian group of forces from Syria. Two Russian military bases, Hmeimim and Tartus, will continue functioning in Syria.