15:17 GMT16 January 2021
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    Governor of the Syrian Homs province, Talal al-Barazi said that Russia played a key role in the liberation of the historic Syrian city of Palmyra from Daesh.

    PALMYRA (Syria) (Sputnik) – Russia played a key role in the liberation of the historic Syrian city of Palmyra from Islamic State (ISIL, also known as Daesh) extremists, Governor of the Syrian Homs province, Talal al-Barazi, told journalists.

    "Without any doubt, the action of the Russian aviation that supported the Syrian army in the fight against the Islamic State terrorist group played the main role in liberating Palmyra from extremists," Talal al-Barazi said.

    On March 27, the Syrian army, backed by militias and Russian Aerospace Forces, fully liberated Palmyra, which was under the control of Daesh since May 2015.

    According to Talal al-Barazi, 3,000 families have left Palmyra amid the violence, 10 percent of them have left Syria.

    "When the city was under Islamic State control, its infrastructure and utilities system were destroyed almost completely," the Homs governor said.

    Before their retreat, Daesh militants planted bombs and land mines all over Palmyra. Russia has deployed several groups of specialists and demining robots to assist Syrian experts in clearing Palmyra of explosives.

    On Wednesday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that the Syrian forces with assistance from Russian specialists had destroyed over 1,500 explosive devices during demining operations in Palmyra.

    Palmyra, located in Syria’s Homs Governorate, was first documented in the early second millennium BC. It is a UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) World Heritage Site.


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