March 30, 2018 / 10:46 AM / 8 months ago

Syrian rebel group denies reports they will leave Douma

A boy is seen on rubble of damaged buildings in the besieged town of Douma, Eastern Ghouta, in Damascus, Syria March 21, 2018. REUTERS/Bassam Khabieh/Files

BEIRUT (Reuters) - The Syrian rebel group Jaish al-Islam denied reports on Friday it would leave Douma near Damascus, after Russia said it had reached an agreement by which insurgents would leave the town.

“Our position is still clear and firm and it is rejecting forced displacement and demographic change in what remains of eastern Ghouta,” the Jaish al-Islam military spokesman Hamza Birqdar said in a message posted on his Telegram feed.

Writing by Tom Perry; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg

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