Syria civil war: Assad hails Palmyra recapture from IS
A monitoring group has backed the Syrian government's claim that the city was recaptured overnight by the army.
Military sources say the Syrian army now has "full control". It had been gaining ground for several days, supported by Russian air strikes.
President Assad said this showed the success of the army's strategy.
His comments, to a group of visiting French parliamentarians, were carried on state TV.
IS seized the Unesco World Heritage site and modern town in May 2015.
Images released by the Syrian military on Saturday showed helicopters and tanks firing at positions in Palmyra.
The date of the footage could not be independently verified.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a UK-based monitoring group, said there was still gunfire in the eastern part of the city, but the bulk of the IS force had pulled out and retreated further east.
In a statement released on Saturday, Russia's defence ministry said the strikes hit 158 IS targets, killing more than 100 militants.