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James Jeffrey, top US official on Syria and Islamic State, retiring

The veteran diplomat will be replaced by his Syria deputy, Joel Rayburn, and top counterterrorism official Nathan Sales.

James Jeffrey, the career diplomat overseeing the Trump administration’s policies on Syria and the Islamic State (IS), is stepping down, the US State Department announced on Monday.

Jeffrey came out of retirement in 2018 to serve as the State Department’s special representative for Syria. And following the resignation of Brett McGurk, he took on the added job of lead US envoy for the international anti-IS coalition.

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