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U.S. unable to confirm if all rebel fighters have left Aleppo - State Department
December 21, 2016 / 7:58 PM / 7 months ago

U.S. unable to confirm if all rebel fighters have left Aleppo - State Department

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A rebel fighter stands with his weapon near evacuees from the Shi'ite Muslim villages of al-Foua and Kefraya as they ride bueses in insurgent-held al-Rashideen, Syria December 20, 2016.Ammar Abdullah

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. State Department said on Wednesday it could not confirm reports that all rebel fighters had left the besieged Syrian city of Aleppo, adding that the absence of U.N. observers to monitor the situation made it difficult to assess the situation.

"I don't think we can say definitively one way or another," State Department spokesman John Kirby said when asked about reports that the last rebel fighters had withdrawn.

"We have been concerned that U.N. monitors have not been allowed in to do exactly that, to try and see for themselves what the situation is and who might be left and who might still need to go," Kirby told a briefing. "So that's a concern to us."

Reporting by Lesley Wroughton; Writing by David Alexander; Editing by Eric Beech

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