BEIRUT – The Latest on the Syrian conflict and the war against the Islamic State group (all times local):
A U.S. official says the coalition is monitoring a convoy of Islamic State fighters who were evacuated from the Lebanon-Syria border toward an area near Iraq under a controversial agreement and may strike the militants.
Col. Ryan Dillan, a spokesman for the U.S.-led alliance against the militants, says "we are monitoring their location in real time." He says the coalition "will not rule out strikes against IS fighters being moved."
He says the coalition has already bombed a small bridge to obstruct the convoy.
Syrian opposition activists say the convoy, which left the Lebanon-Syria border on Tuesday, is still in government-controlled territory in eastern Syria.
The IS militants were allowed to evacuate in buses following a Hezbollah-negotiated deal that allows them to go to IS-held territory near the Iraqi border.
Dillan said "we are not party to any agreements that were made by the Lebanese Hezbollah and ISIS or the (Syrian) regime." ISIS is another acronym for the Islamic State group.
A U.S. official has blasted a deal that led to the evacuation of hundreds of Islamic State group fighters and civilians from the Lebanon-Syria border to areas close to Iraq, saying the extremists should be killed on the battlefield.
The evacuation agreement, the first such publicized deal, had already angered many Iraqis who accused Syria and Lebanon's Hezbollah of dumping the militants on the Iraqi border rather than eradicating them.
The top U.S. envoy for the international coalition against IS, Brett McGurk, tweeted on Wednesday that it is "irreconcilable" that IS "terrorists should be killed on the battlefield, not bused across #Syria to the Iraqi border without #Iraq's consent."
McGurk added that the anti-IS coalition will help ensure that "these terrorists can never" enter Iraq.