12:35 GMT +303 December 2016
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    View of the ancient oasis city of Palmyra

    Syrian Army, Desert Falcons Gain Control Over Strategic Height Near Palmyra

    © AFP 2016/ Joseph EID
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    Syrian government forces and Desert Falcons fighters have gained control over a strategically important height near Palmyra in the Homs province, a military source told Sputnik.

    According to the source which participates in the operation aimed at the liberation of Palmyra, the Syrian army has restored control over the Qalaat Fakhr ad-Din al-Maani Castle, also known as the "Palmyra Castle".

    "The infantry of the Syrian army together with allied forces regained control of the entrance to the city Palmyra after a height of Alseriaatal was liberated yesterday and the historic Castle of Palmyra today," the source told Sputnik Arabic.

    Syria's ancient city of Palmyra
    © AFP 2016/ STRINGER
    Syria's ancient city of Palmyra

    According to him, the complete liberation of Palmyra is now a matter of time after a major operation has been launched and a huge advance has been achieved from three sides of the city.

    Earlier in the day, a RIA Novosti correspondent reported that the Syrian army and the Desert Falcons militia commenced an assault on the ancient citadel of Palmyra.

    On Thursday, army and militia consolidated their positions on the territory of the hotel complex in southeastern Palmyra after a joint operation to gain control of strategic heights surrounding the historic city.

    Palmyra has been under Daesh control since May 2015. The terrorist group has since destroyed part of the city, which is a designated UNESCO World Heritage site.

    A brigadier-general told Sputnik on Wednesday that the Syrian army had recaptured a historic part of the city from the militants.

    Related:

    Syrian Army, Desert Falcons Start Assault on Palmyra Citadel
    A Cleaving Blow: Palmyra's Liberation Spells Doom for Daesh
    Russian Jets Strike 146 Terrorist Targets Around Palmyra
    Tags:
    Desert Falcons, Daesh, Palmyra, Syria
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    • jj42
      Deash will be completely cleaned out of Palmyra in the coming days. Their last stronghold will be Raqqa they will be shaking in their boots only the outright fanatics will stay to die for a worthless cause.
    • A = π r 2
      the SAA train - now calling all stations to: ar-Raqqa East
    • A = π r 2
      in some ways this is bad news. it's well known by now that when Daesh suffers significant defeats on the battlefield it compensates for them with terrorist attacks to mask their losses and generate international propaganda.

      whilst it's a success in the sense that these orcs are being pushed back into the firey wasteland from whence they came, there's the looming fear that this will be met with attacks on soft targets near and far.
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