Syrian government forces and their Russian backers have completely recaptured the ancient city of Palmyra from so-called Islamic State (IS) militants, the two allies say.The military importance of this operation is minimal, but the symbolic value of the retaking of Palmyra is considerable for both the Syrian Government and for Russia. And symbolism can count for a lot in wartime.
The army and other pro-government forces were reported to have entered deep into the city after IS pulled out.
It ends the second occupation of Palmyra by the jihadists.
The first time they controlled the area, the militants destroyed some of its most celebrated monuments.
IS fighters were driven out in March last year, but managed to retake the city, its world famous ruins and the surrounding area in December.
Again, I hope the new occupiers of Palmyra will take special care to look after the local residents, who have been though all kinds of hell.
Background here and links.