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President Vladimir Putin on Monday ordered the Russian forces in Syria to withdraw, saying that after a two-year military campaign, Moscow and Damascus completed their mission to destroy ISIS.
Putin said during a surprising visit to the Hmeymim Air Force in Latakia, Syria, where he met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and addressed the Russian army. .
In September 2015, Russia launched air strikes in Syria as part of its largest intervention in the Middle East for decades, lifting the conflict in favor of Assad, significantly increasing Moscow's influence on the Middle East.