Islamic State crisis: 'Mines planted in Syria's Palmyra'
June 21, 2015 5:28 pm
Islamic State (IS) militants have planted landmines and explosives around the ancient Palmyra ruins, according to a group that monitors the war in Syria.
Activists said it was unclear whether IS had laid the bombs to destroy the ruins or make the site secure from Syrian government forces.
IS fighters seized the city, which is one of the most important historic sites in the Middle East, in May.
Government forces are reported to be planning a bid to recapture the site.
The director of the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Rami Abdel Rahman, told reporters that Syrian soldiers outside the city have brought in reinforcements in recent days, “suggesting they may be planning an operation”.
He said government forces had also launched heavy air strikes against the residential part of Palmyra in the past three days, killing at least 11 people.
The group relies on a network of sources inside Syria for its information.