A man cycles down a street with no electricity in the besieged rebel bastion of Douma, northeast of the capital Damascus on November 19, 2014. Douma has been under government siege for more than a year, with residents facing dwindling food and medical supplies. AFP PHOTO / ABD DOUMANY / AFP / ABD DOUMANY

The Syrian government forces backed by Russian Air Force have reached the outskirts of the Sukhneh town, the last Islamic State (IS) stronghold in the central province of Homs, a military source told Xinhua on Friday.

The Syrian army has reached the outskirts of Sukhneh in the eastern countryside of Homs, as part of a wide-scale military offensive to drive out IS from the Syrian Desert, the source said on condition of anonymity.

Capturing Sukhneh would enable the Syrian army to break the IS siege to the eastern province of Deir al-Zour near Iraq, the source said.

Sukhneh lies on the road between Palmyra and Deir al-Zour, and is the last IS stronghold in eastern Homs, where the Syrian army has been carrying out a crushing offensive over the past few months to end the presence of IS there.

The Russian warplanes have been also supporting the ground Syrian troops and allied fighters in their push to clear the desert of IS. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/Newsghana.com.gh