VIDEO: Syrian Army Pushes Deeper into Palmyra, to Regain Control in Days

Sun Mar 27, 2016 09:41:16

Syrian government forces have been pushing deeper into Islamic State (ISIS)-held Palmyra, recapturing the hilltop citadel and the airbase since starting an offensive against the militant group days ago.

Fierce fighting between government forces and ISIS (ISIL / Daesh) militants continued Saturday in the ancient city, a UNESCO world heritage site known for its Roman-era ruins, with artillery fire ringing in the air and heavy smoke rising from many locations.

According to military sources, the Syrian soldiers and allied militias have taken control of neighborhoods in the western and northern parts of the city.

As clashes raged on Saturday, a China Central Television (CCTV) journalist on the western citadel saw nearby artillery fire between the two sides.

The hilltop citadel, which was built in the 13th century and overlooks the ancient ruins of Palmyra, has been hotly contested by Syrian government forces backed by Russian airstrikes and ISIS, which overran the town last May, and has blown up ancient temples and looted relics dating back thousands of years.

A government official said that the Syrian troops expect to regain full control of Palmyra within days.

The recapture of the desert city would be one of the most prominent successes for President Bashar al-Assad since Russia launched a military intervention in September which has turned the tide of Syria’s civil war, Reuters reported.

S/SH 11

string(1940) "[{"id":"1802123","sort":"3519447","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/25/alalam_635945198586709554_25f_4x3.mp4","title":"Syrian Army Units, Popular Forces Seize Strategic Hill near Palmyra Castle + VIDEO"} ,{"id":"1802149","sort":"3519448","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/25/alalam_635945247110055804_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"VIDEO: Syrian Army Troops Liberate 110 sq/km of Homs Province in 2 Days"} ,{"id":"1802154","sort":"3519449","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/25/alalam_635945253473342116_25f_4x3.mp4","title":"Syrian Army Troops, Allied Forces Advancing toward Palmyra Citadel + VIDEO"} ,{"id":"1802161","sort":"3519450","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/25/alalam_635945264831677930_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"ISIS Terrorists under Pressure as Syrian Army Troops Advance on Palmyra"} ,{"id":"1802165","sort":"3519451","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/25/alalam_635945274175522221_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"URGENT: Syrian Army, Popular Forces Seize Palmyra Castle"} ,{"id":"1802394","sort":"3519452","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/26/alalam_635945966987131710_25f_4x3.mp4","title":"VIDEO: Syrian Army Regains More Strategic Areas near Ancient Palmyra"} ,{"id":"1802426","sort":"3519453","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/26/alalam_635946013186882373_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Syrian Army Regains Strategic Villages, Buildings in Homs Province"} ,{"id":"1802470","sort":"3519454","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/26/alalam_635946063183393373_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"VIDEO: Syrian Army Units Cut ISIS Quaryatayn-Palmyra Supply Line"} ,{"id":"1802488","sort":"3519455","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/26/alalam_635946104112427889_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Hezbollah, Syrian Army Liberate Al-Amariyah in Northern Syria's Palmyra"} ,{"id":"1802527","sort":"3519456","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/26/alalam_635946180561262995_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Top ISIS Leaders Killed in Clashes with Syrian Army in Deir ez-Zor"} ]"