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Pictures | Fri Jan 4, 2019 | 6:15pm IST

With U.S. departure, Syria's Manbij braces for upheaval

A member of Manbij Military Council gestures at a car in Manbij city, Syria, December 29, 2018. Some 20 miles from the Turkish border, Manbij occupies a critical spot in the map of the Syrian conflict, near the junction of three separate blocks of territory that form spheres of Russian, Turkish and - for now - U.S. influence.   REUTERS/Rodi Said

A member of Manbij Military Council gestures at a car in Manbij city, Syria, December 29, 2018. Some 20 miles from the Turkish border, Manbij occupies a critical spot in the map of the Syrian conflict, near the junction of three separate blocks of...more

A member of Manbij Military Council gestures at a car in Manbij city, Syria, December 29, 2018. Some 20 miles from the Turkish border, Manbij occupies a critical spot in the map of the Syrian conflict, near the junction of three separate blocks of territory that form spheres of Russian, Turkish and - for now - U.S. influence. REUTERS/Rodi Said
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A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel plays with a dog at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. The city of Manbij has switched control more than most places in Syria's civil war.  
 REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel plays with a dog at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. The city of Manbij has switched control more than most places in Syria's civil war. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel plays with a dog at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. The city of Manbij has switched control more than most places in Syria's civil war. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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People walk near the Manbij Municipality building in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. U.S. forces have underpinned stability in Manbij since Islamic State's defeat here in 2016. 
  REUTERS/Rodi Said

People walk near the Manbij Municipality building in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. U.S. forces have underpinned stability in Manbij since Islamic State's defeat here in 2016. REUTERS/Rodi Said

People walk near the Manbij Municipality building in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. U.S. forces have underpinned stability in Manbij since Islamic State's defeat here in 2016. REUTERS/Rodi Said
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Turkish-backed Syrian rebels stand on the back of a truck at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. Turkey-backed rebels have been mobilizing for an attack on Manbij in nearby areas that have been under Turkey's control since it swept into northern Syria in 2016, part of its effort to roll back the YPG. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish-backed Syrian rebels stand on the back of a truck at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. Turkey-backed rebels have been mobilizing for an attack on Manbij in nearby areas that have been under Turkey's control since it swept into northern...more

Turkish-backed Syrian rebels stand on the back of a truck at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. Turkey-backed rebels have been mobilizing for an attack on Manbij in nearby areas that have been under Turkey's control since it swept into northern Syria in 2016, part of its effort to roll back the YPG. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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A woman holds a bag on her head at a souk in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. Manbij has changed hands three times since the Syrian conflict began in 2011. Free Syrian Army rebels seized it from President Bashar al-Assad's government early in the conflict. Then it fell to Islamic State which declared it part of its 'caliphate'. REUTERS/Rodi Said

A woman holds a bag on her head at a souk in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. Manbij has changed hands three times since the Syrian conflict began in 2011. Free Syrian Army rebels seized it from President Bashar al-Assad's government early in the...more

A woman holds a bag on her head at a souk in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. Manbij has changed hands three times since the Syrian conflict began in 2011. Free Syrian Army rebels seized it from President Bashar al-Assad's government early in the conflict. Then it fell to Islamic State which declared it part of its 'caliphate'. REUTERS/Rodi Said
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People stand near the civil administration building of Manbij city, December 29, 2018. Islamic State was dislodged from Manbij in 2016 by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a militia force spearheaded by the Kurdish YPG and backed by the U.S.-led coalition. Manbij has been held by SDF-allied forces since then, angering neighboring Turkey which views the influence wielded by the YPG in northern Syria as a national security threat.    REUTERS/Rodi Said

People stand near the civil administration building of Manbij city, December 29, 2018. Islamic State was dislodged from Manbij in 2016 by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a militia force spearheaded by the Kurdish YPG and backed by the U.S.-led...more

People stand near the civil administration building of Manbij city, December 29, 2018. Islamic State was dislodged from Manbij in 2016 by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a militia force spearheaded by the Kurdish YPG and backed by the U.S.-led coalition. Manbij has been held by SDF-allied forces since then, angering neighboring Turkey which views the influence wielded by the YPG in northern Syria as a national security threat. REUTERS/Rodi Said
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A street vendor sells fruits and vegetables in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Rodi Said

A street vendor sells fruits and vegetables in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Rodi Said

A street vendor sells fruits and vegetables in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Rodi Said
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Turkish military vehicles drive at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. Turkish and U.S. forces have been conducting joint patrols near Manbij since November, agreed as part of U.S. efforts to satisfy Turkish concerns.  
 REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish military vehicles drive at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. Turkish and U.S. forces have been conducting joint patrols near Manbij since November, agreed as part of U.S. efforts to satisfy Turkish concerns. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish military vehicles drive at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. Turkish and U.S. forces have been conducting joint patrols near Manbij since November, agreed as part of U.S. efforts to satisfy Turkish concerns. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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People gather in front of Manbij Municipality building in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Rodi Said

People gather in front of Manbij Municipality building in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Rodi Said

People gather in front of Manbij Municipality building in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Rodi Said
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Women sit near a jewelry shop in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Rodi Said

Women sit near a jewelry shop in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Rodi Said

Women sit near a jewelry shop in Manbij city, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Rodi Said
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Turkish-backed Syrian rebels stand with their weapons at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish-backed Syrian rebels stand with their weapons at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish-backed Syrian rebels stand with their weapons at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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A Turkish military vehicle drives at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish military vehicle drives at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish military vehicle drives at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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Turkish-backed Syrian rebels stand with their weapons at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish-backed Syrian rebels stand with their weapons at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish-backed Syrian rebels stand with their weapons at Manbij countryside, December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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Turkish soldiers are seen at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish soldiers are seen at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish soldiers are seen at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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Turkish soldiers ride a military vehicle at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish soldiers ride a military vehicle at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish soldiers ride a military vehicle at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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Turkish-backed Syrian rebels walk as they hold their weapons in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019.  REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish-backed Syrian rebels walk as they hold their weapons in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

Turkish-backed Syrian rebels walk as they hold their weapons in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel rides on a truck with a mounted weapon at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel rides on a truck with a mounted weapon at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel rides on a truck with a mounted weapon at Manbij countryside, December 28, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel helps his fellow rebel in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019.   REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel helps his fellow rebel in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel helps his fellow rebel in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel prays in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel prays in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel prays in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel warms himself around a fire in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel warms himself around a fire in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

A Turkish-backed Syrian rebel warms himself around a fire in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, January 3, 2019. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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