By Tom O’Connor
As the nation’s civil war entered its sixth year, the Syrian army and its allies achieved another strategic victory. Their forces advanced against positions held by the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS, in the eastern outskirts of Palmyra and pushed the group further from the ruins of the ancient city. The offensive came as twin suicide blasts killed dozens of people hundreds of miles away in Damascus.
The Syrian army, backed by Russia, Iran and allied militias, retook Palmyra earlier this month, forcing the jihadists to retreat for the second time. The hardline Sunni Muslim group first took the city in May 2015 and was driven out by the Syrian military and its supporters in March 2016. ISIS returned in December as the Syrian army diverted its efforts to ousting other insurgent groups from the city of Aleppo.
Source: News Now / News Week Online