World

Report: 4 US-backed Syrian rebels defect to government

Syrian opposition activists say a small number of U.S.-backed rebels have defected and joined government forces south of the country.

The defection of at least four rebels came after The Washington Post reported that the White House has decided to halt the CIA supply-and-equip program for Syrian rebels.

The defection also came as Col. Ryan Dillon, the spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition fighting the Islamic State group, told CNN this week that "the coalition supports only those forces committed to fighting" the Islamic State group.

Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights' chief Rami Abdurrahman said four members of the Revolution Commando Army defected Thursday.

Ahmad al-Masalmeh, an opposition activist based in southern Syria, and another activist with wide knowledge about U.S-backed rebels confirmed the defections on Saturday.