BEIRUT: Palmyra, home to a UNESCO Heritage site, was recaptured by the Islamic State group in December, nine months after a Russia-backed offensive drove out the militants.
Russia's defense ministry said in an statement on Monday Syrian government troops are about 20 kilometers (12 miles) away from the city and that Russia's Air Force last week performed more than 90 flights to provide air cover for the offensive.
The defense ministry earlier on Monday released drone footage, showing a central section of Palmyra's famous theater lying in ruins after IS militants supposedly blew it up.
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