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Syrian opposition iced out of White House

The Donald Trump administration held off on the opportunity to talk to Syrian opposition officials in town this week even as it outlined a tougher stance against Bashar al-Assad.
Free Syrian Army fighters sit together in the town of Tadef in Aleppo Governorate, Syria October 23, 2017. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi - RC19D8DC3BD0

A delegation of leading opposition figures touched down in Washington this week hoping to convince White House officials to protect rebel-held zones in northwestern Syria from forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad.

Instead, even as the Donald Trump administration announced plans today to leave US troops in Syria and attempt to transition Assad from power, the White House passed on the meeting. The group of four representatives from the Free Syrian Army (FSA), a 20,000-strong bloc of Arab fighters based in Syria’s northwest, had to take their case to the State Department, Congress and a series of think tanks to salvage their weeklong trip.

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