Dozens dead in fighting for ancient Syrian city of Palmyra

Syrian citizens pictured on March 14, 2014 at the ancient oasis city of Palmyra, a UNESCO-listed world heritage siteSyrian government troops and militia put up fierce resistance on Sunday to an Islamic State group assault on one of the jewels of the country's heritage, ancient Palmyra. At least 23 regime loyalists and 29 jihadists were killed as IS overran northern neighbourhoods of the adjacent modern town of Tadmur late on Saturday, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. The Britain-based watchdog reported heavy artillery exchanges in the west of the town, close to the UNESCO-listed world heritage site. "We have good news today, we feel much better," he told AFP by phone, saying he was in contact with staff in Palmyra every half an hour.

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