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Report: Bush Administration Reaching Out to Syrian Opposition


A report in the Washington Post newspaper says U.S. officials are reaching out to Syria's opposition as concerns grow that political unrest in Lebanon could spread into Syria.

In an interview with the Post published Saturday, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said the United States is speaking to many people in the region about the situation in Syria, in order to prepare for any eventuality.

The Post says Washington's action is the result of a discussion between President Bush and French President Jacques Chirac, in which Mr. Chirac cautioned that Syria's government is not likely to survive the withdrawal of its troops from Lebanon. He also is reported to have predicted that free elections in Lebanon will force change inside Syria.

Meanwhile, in Lebanon, Syria's withdrawal continues. Witnesses report several truckloads of troops and equipment crossing the border into Syria overnight.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.

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