Islamic State ousted from ancient Syrian city of Palmyra

Despite driving Islamic State fighters out of the ancient city of Palmyra, the Syrian army still lacks control of the city’s eastern areas. 

Russian-backed Syrian troops drove out Islamic State (IS) fighters from the ancient city of Palmyra, located in eastern Syria, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

“IS withdrew from most of Palmyra after laying mines across the city,” the organization’s head Rami Abdel-Rahman told AFP. “There are no IS fighters left in most of the Old City, but it is heavily mined.”

Despite making advances in the city, the Syrian army does not control eastern Palmyra.

“Government forces have not yet been able to enter the heart of the city or the eastern parts,” Abdel-Rahman added. “There are still suicide bombers left in the eastern neighborhoods.”

IS forces took control of the city in May of 2015 and destroyed a number of its ancient ruins. Nine months after losing the city to Russian-backed Syrian forces in March of 2016, ISIS retook the city in December during the height of the battle over Aleppo.

By: Jonathan Benedek, World Israel News