World

ISIS caliphate has been decimated: Trump

Washington

The ISIS has been decimated, US President Donald Trump has said, adding that sometime probably next week, he will formally announce to have 100 per cent of the caliphate.

The United States military, its Coalition partners and the Syrian Democratic Forces have liberated virtually all of the territory previously held by ISIS in Syria and Iraq, Trump said on Wednesday.

“It should be formally announced sometime probably next week that we will have 100 percent of the caliphate. But I want to wait for the official word. I don’t want to say it too early,” Trump said in his address to the Ministers of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS.

He said the new approach developed by his administration, empowered US commanders in the field, enabled partners on the ground, and directly confronted ISIS’s “wicked” ideology.

Over the past two years, US and its partners have retaken more than 20,000 square miles of land, he said.

“We have secured one battlefield. And we’ve had victory after victory after victory, and retaken both Mosul and Raqqa. We have eliminated more than 60 mile high-value ISIS leaders,” he said.

“Now, they reform; we know that. But they’re having a hard time re-forming, and I wouldn’t say it’s a great job to have because of us. It’s not exactly – hopefully will not be a sought-after occupation,” he said.

“More than a hundred other top ISIS officials have been eliminated, and tens of thousands of ISIS fighters are gone. They’re gone,” he stressed.

US and its international partners, he said, have freed more than five million civilians from the grip of these bloodthirsty killers.

“Thanks to the Global Coalition, including all of you here today, and to our other partners, the ISIS caliphate has been decimated. Nobody thought it was possible to do it this quickly,” Trump said.

Observing that the struggle against terrorism was a shared fight, Trump said: “We do it together. If we don’t do it together, it can never be the same. Everyone must do their part and contribute their fair share.”