The White House said on Friday that the Islamic State has been completely eradicated in Syria. "The territorial caliphate has been eliminated in Syria," Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters. She said U.S.-backed forces had defeated ISIS's final foothold in the country, more than four years after the U.S. launched its first airstrikes against the militant group. President Trump said in December "we have defeated ISIS in Syria," and announced that all U.S. troops would come home, only to backpedal and announce plans to leave several hundred troops in former ISIS strongholds. Sanders said on Friday that the Pentagon "made the call" to declare ISIS defeated.
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