Syrian army soldiers and tanks were a visible presence on the streets of Qusair today having earlier taking control of the city from rebel fighters in a significant advance for President Bashar al-Assad’s forces in the country’s civil war.
Hezbollah television station Al-Manar showed large numbers of soldiers on the streets as well as tanks and diggers clearing rubble as tanks moved around the damaged clock-tower in the centre of the city.
There was no sign of civilians with deserted cars and damaged buildings seemingly empty.
Rebels said they had pulled out of Qusair, which lies on a cross-border supply route with neighbouring Lebanon and where they had fought fierce battles with government forces and Hezbollah guerrillas for more than two weeks.
More than 80,000 people have been killed in the fighting and another 1.6 million Syrians refugees have fled a conflict which has fuelled sectarian tensions across the Middle East, spilled over into neighbouring Lebanon and divided world powers.