The Iraqi government on Saturday announced the end of its combat operations against the Islamic State after three years of internal war on the would-be caliphate.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said at a press conference in Baghdad that Iraqi forces now have total control over the Iraqi-Syrian border, and Lt. Gen. Abdul-Amir Rasheed Yar Allah said all "Iraqi lands are liberated from terrorist [ISIS] gangs." In alliance with U.S.-led coalition forces, Iraqi troops have slowly recovered the third of Iraqi territory ISIS claimed beginning in 2014.
While ISIS no longer controls Iraqi land, the terrorist group is not eradicated and has shifted its strategy toward attacks than can be carried out by individuals rather than armies. Nevertheless, al-Abadi struck a hopeful note in his Saturday comments. "Our enemy wanted to kill our civilization, but we have won through our unity and our determination," he said. "We have triumphed in little time."