Soldiers from the Syrian army carry a rocket to fire at Islamic State group positions in the province of Raqqa, Syria, Feb. 17, 2016. (Alexander Kots/Komsomolskaya Pravda via AP)
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U.N. Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura said Thursday he had information from Russia and Syria that "some substantial number of fighters appeared to have been released".He suggested the release could be timed to coincide with the holy month of Ramadan or as a unilateral gesture by the government, but he was seeking more information to confirm that those released were "genuine fighters, political prisoners". The Syrian opposition has long demanded the release of detainees, especially women and children, and de Mistura has appointed a former Red Cross official, Eva Svoboda, to take charge of the issue.The main opposition negotiating group, the High Negotiations Committee, has a list of 150,000 detainees, its spokesman, Salim al-Muslat, told Reuters in April.
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