In this picture taken Friday, April 1, 2016, smoke rises in the distance as damage is seen at the historical Bel Temple in the ancient city of Palmyra in the central city of Homs, Syria. (AP Photo)
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Syrian government forces Wednesday battled extremists who cut a key supply route west of ancient Palmyra, after new bombardments hit Aleppo city where a cease-fire is due to expire at midnight.Today ISIS surrounds Palmyra from all directions except the southwest, Observatory chief Rami Abdel-Rahman said, adding that ISIS was within 10 kilometres (around six miles) of the city.In Deiral-Zor province further east, at least seven civilians were killed, including a child, in government air strikes late Wednesday on an area held by ISIS.Late Tuesday, government warplanes struck two other rebel-held neighbourhoods, he added.A local truce took effect in Aleppo last Thursday after a surge in fighting killed more than 300 people in the city and threatened to unravel a nationwide cease-fire between government forces and non-extremist rebels in force since February.Rebel rocket fire on government neighbourhoods killed three civilians on Sunday but otherwise it has largely held.The Feb. 27 cease-fire applies to all areas except those where ISIS and Nusra Front, Syria's Al-Qaeda affiliate, are present.
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