SYRIA, THE ISIS ADVANCES TOWARDS PALMIRA. AT ALEPPO BOMB KILLS 39 CIVILIANS Following long conflicts in the desert, the Isis combats have approached approximately 2 km from the Unesco declared world heritage city of Palmyra

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In Syria, while the Jihadists of the Islamic State are threatening the ancient city of Palmyra, the regime’s forces have dropped bomb and missile barrels against some rebel villages in the north of the country. In the attack 39 civilians have been killed as well as 17 children and ten other people injured. Regarding the use of homemade bombs containing toxic substances, the British newspaper “The Times” in early April, wrote that the inspectors of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (Opcw) have opened an enquiry following some soil samples that had been collected in areas struck by the attacks. The tests showed that Assad continues to use chlorine bombs and cyanide. In particular, the sample taken in an area of the province of Idlib where last month an entire family of six people were killed, traces of toxic substances had been found.

Meanwhile, Palmyra, ancient Syrian city declared a world heritage site by Unesco, risks falling under the devastating fury of Islamic State, as had occurred in the recent months in northern Iraq, where the Jihadists have literally destroyed archaeological sites and museums in the area. The alarm was launched by the Syrian Observatory that men of the Caliphate, after violent clashes in the wilderness, have arrived at about 2 km away from the ruins of the ancient city. “If Palmira falls under the Isis, it will be an international catastrophe,” said Maamoun Al Kawari, the Director of Antiquities,emphasizing the universal value of the site. Built at the foot of the Euphrates in the 3rd millennium BC, it was initially called Tamdor (literally ‘ palm ‘) and is mentioned in the Bible as the city of the desert built by King Solomon.

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