Syria: About 40 bodies reportedly found in mass grave in Palmyra

- Syrian engineering teams and popular defense groups uncovered a mass grave in a neighborhood in the newly recaptured ancient city of Palmyra, Syria’s state-news agency reported Friday.

The remains of about 40 people, 23 of them women and children, were found in the graves. SANA news agency reported they were killed by Islamic State militants and said some of the bodies were beheaded and bore signs of torture.

Syrian army experts detonated hundreds of mines they say were planted by the Islamic State before they were forced out of Palmyra last Sunday, according to the Associated Press.

Reporters were able to tour the archaeological gem that had attracted tens of thousands of tourists every year before the Islamic State captured the city and destroyed most of its Christian artifacts. While, some parts of the site, including the Roman-era grand colonnades and amphitheater appeared relatively untouched, the damage every else was very much visible.

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