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Defense Department Not Confident That 50,000 ISIS Fighters Have Been Killed

On Tuesday, Under Secretary of Defense Peter Levine held a press conference. During the press conference, Levine was asked about claims that the United States military had killed 50,000 ISIS fighters in Iraq and Syria.

In December, CNN reported, “As many as 50,000 ISIS fighters have been killed since the war against the terror group began.”

Brett McGurk, the US special envoy to the anti-ISIS coalition, told reporters, “The number of battle-ready fighters inside Iraq and Syria is now at its lowest point that it’s ever been.”

“First of all, again, a senior Defense Department official provided you that number, which was their prerogative to do. It’s not a number that we talk about publicly because it’s not a good metric of success, and it’s not an easy number to determine,” Levine told the reporter.

Levine went on to tell the reporter that the Department of Defense doesn’t “have great confidence in that number.”