The Telegraph’s Peter Oborne visits the town of Maaloula, 40 miles from Damascus, where government forces have routed radical Islamist rebels and regained control of ancient Christian places of worship.
Aramaic, the language spoken by Jesus Christ is still spoken in Maaloula. On a hill above the village lies the ancient monastery of St Sergius.
After months of heavy fighting in the area between Syrian regime forces and rebels, the monastery and a small chapel within it lie in ruins. They suffered great damage from gun and shellfire, but also at the hands of Islamist rebels who for months controlled Maaloula.
Now the regime of Bashar al-Assad has regained control of the village, and allowed The Telegraph’s chief political commentator Peter Oborne to visit.