Trump Declares Islamic State Will Be Eliminated on Wednesday

(Bloomberg) -- President Donald Trump said that the Islamic State militant group’s territory would be completely recaptured as of Wednesday night.

“The caliphate is gone as of tonight,” Trump said in a speech at a General Dynamics Corp. factory in Lima, Ohio. He held up a piece of paper with two maps of Syria and Iraq, one showing territory controlled by Islamic State before he took office and the other showing how much land the group had lost.

The Associated Press reported Wednesday that U.S.-backed Syrian fighters are searching the last pocket of land held by Islamic State for any holdout fighters, and that there were no signs of further battle.

Trump announced in December that he would withdraw U.S. military forces from Syria, declaring Islamic State defeated. Military officials and members of Congress cautioned that the announcement was premature. The president subsequently agreed to keep as many as 400 U.S. troops in the country.

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