After the liberation of Islamic State-held Palmyra city in Syria by the Syrian Army, demining experts have so far removed 150 landmines planted deep inside the archaeological site in the ancient city.
This video shows Syria Army soldiers de-mining and clearing the landmines here after the IS was expelled from the ancient city on March 27, following three weeks of intense fighting with Syrian troops. The city known to Syrians as the ‘Bride of the Desert” is famous for its 2,000-year-old ruins that once drew tens of thousands of visitors each year before IS destroyed many of the monuments.
The extent of the destruction remained unclear. Initial footage on Syrian TV showed widespread rubble and shattered statues. But Palmyra’s grand colonnades appeared to be in relatively good condition.
Syria’s head of antiquities and museums, Maamoun Abdul-Karim, had said last week that the technical team couldn’t reach some remote sites, including the burial places, because there are “hundreds of mines” still left.
Syrian government forces pusted the Islamic State fighters, who waged a 10-month reign of terror in Palmyra. The government forces were supported by Lebanese militias and Russian air power.
(with inputs from AP)