State Department Will Not Rule Out Return of Assad Cronies to Control of Raqqa


The State Department refused Thursday to categorically say that it will oppose associates of Bashar al-Assad’s regime serving in the new administration of the recently-liberated ISIS “capital” of Raqqa, Syria.

Asked at her Thursday press conference whether it would “be okay or acceptable” for pro-Assad figures to serve in the now-forming Raqqa Civil Council, State Department Spokeswoman Heather Nauert declined to give a definite answer.

“We have continued to say that whoever eventually would run local governments should be representative of the people, should embody and believe in fundamental human rights and protection of those civilians in the are,” Nauert said, adding later, “How do we handle the liberation of Raqqa from ISIS? We’re just about at that point right now. We’re very happy with that. We’re not there yet. It’s still going to be a long road.”

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