Declaring victory over the Islamic State in Syria, President Donald Trump is ordering the return of all U.S. troops in the country as soon as possible, USA Today reported Wednesday.
Currently, more than 2,000 U.S. troops are deployed in Syria.
The withdrawal is based Trump's decision that the mission against the Islamic State is complete, said the official, who was not authorized to speak publicly before it is announced.
Trump wrote in a Wednesday morning tweet that “We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there during the Trump Presidency.”
But U.S.-led fighting against ISIS continues in Syria:
On Saturday, there were 47 airstrikes conducted by war planes against ISIS targets, U.S. Central Command announced early Wednesday. The bombs struck 20 ISIS fighting units, destroyed petroleum tanks, a tunnel, vehicle and a mortar-firing position.
Further, according to a recent report by the Center for Strategic and International Studies, it is far from obliterated. The Washington-based think tank estimates ISIS may still possess between 20,000 to 30,000 militants in Iraq and Syria.
Just last week, officials said the U.S. might need to maintain a military presence in Syria to cement progress and ensure their accomplishments are “enduring”, USA Today noted.
Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, declined earlier in December to put a timeline on withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria, suggesting they would be needed for some time to establish conditions for a long-term peace agreement.
"We still have a long way to go and so I'd be reluctant to give a fixed time," Dunford said during a forum held by the Washington Post.