MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Earlier in the day, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu confirmed in a report to President Vladimir Putin that the Syrian army had regained control over Palmyra with support of the Russian aircraft operating in Syria.
"The liberation of Palmyra is a powerful symbol, of the liberation of Syria from the terror plague and its return to the normal life and return of the preserved treasures of Palmyra to humanity," Kosachev told reporters.
Palmyra has become the symbol of Syria’s tragedy and it was not accidental that the militants tried to keep control over the city, Kosachev added.
Daesh seized Palmyra, which was the capital of the Palmyrene Empire and one of the richest cities of the Roman Empire, in May 2015. Terrorists destroyed a number of historic sights designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including the Arch of Triumph, the Temple of Baalshamin and the Temple of Bel. Jihadists also looted the national museum and the famous Palmyra’s necropolis.
Almost a year later, the Syrian army managed to liberate the city, however, in December 2016, the jihadists regained control over the city for the second time and destroyed part of its cultural property.