Iraqi special forces general Sami al-Aridi claims that a piddling 300 ISIS fighters remain in Mosul, an area where 960 extremists have been killed and more than 6,000 wounded since ISIS took control in 2014, according to the Associated Press.
ISIS first took control of Mosul three years ago.
Iraq’s special forces general went on to say that the militants retain a mere 500 square meters in the seized patch of land they control in the old city.
A large number of civilian detainees are still being held captive, with “around 1,500 fleeing with every 100-meter (yard) advance by Iraqi forces.”
The Iraqi commander continued to voice his concern about the relative ease in which hundreds of militants have been able to flee Syria. “They just shave their beards and walk out,” al-Aridi said. “Just yesterday we captured two among a group of women and children.”
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson notes that over the past year, ISIS recruitment has dropped more than 90 percent and 75 percent of the Islamic State’s online propaganda has been eliminated.
IHS Markit security analyst Firas Abi Ali predicts the Islamic State is “close to military defeat” and will “probably be defeated by late 2017.”