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White House: Daesh militants in Syria came from 40 countries

Acting U.S Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan holds a press conference after the NATO Defense Ministers' Meeting at NATO headquarters in Brussels, Belgium on February 14, 2019. ( Dursun Aydemir - Anadolu Agency )

The White House revealed yesterday that Daesh fighters in Syria came from 40 countries and that many of them were arrested after the US “crackdown” on the group.

“There are more than 1,000 foreign fighters from more than 40 countries held by the Syrian Democratic Forces,” the White House said in a statement. No details were given as to which countries the fighters are from.

“The Syrian Democratic Forces have confirmed that 100 per cent of the territory controlled by the organi ation in Syria and Iraq has been liberated,” US Acting Defence Secretary, Patrick Shanahan, said.

READ: Trump says Daesh no longer holds any territory in Syria

Shanahan added in a statement that Daesh used to control 20,000 square miles in both Iraq and Syria, but the areas have now been cleared of the group’s presence since January 2017, adding that the group no longer controls any residential areas.

Germany’s Der Spiegel newspaper reported on Saturday that nearly 60 Germans who are suspected of being Daesh members are being held by the Syrian Democratic Forces, noting that the majority are women and their children.

Two days ago, US President Donald Trump announced that the United States had liberated 100 per cent of the land controlled by Daesh in Iraq and Syria.

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