After 4 years of siege, over 3 years of that under total encirclement, the city is being relieved in a Syrian-Russian offensive
The Syrian state TV is reporting the first units part of the Syrian army offensive to relieve the besieged city of Deir ez-Zor have linked up with its defenders thus breaking the full ISIS blockade of the city which has existed for over three years now.
This is just the first contact with the encircled troops over a stretch of open desert. The Syrian air base adjacent to the city remains under full ISIS blockade. ISIS also still holds the last stretch of the key road leading from Suknah to Deir ez-Zor.
Relief troops now have to continue their advance, and make contact with the Deir ez-Zor air base, and capture the last two villages on the Suknah-Deir ez-Zor road. When that is accomplished we can say the siege has been fully broken.
UPDATE #1 -- First footage of the encircled and relief units meeting:
Suheil Hassan aka "The Tiger", the commander of the Tiger Forces, which led the charge to Deir ez-Zoir on one of its axes, being greeted as he reaches the city:
UPDATE #2 -- The Syrian Arab Army official announcement of link up:
Scenes of jubilation in the city: