BAGHDAD (AP) — High-ranking Iraqi security officials say up to 7,000 Islamic State group affiliates remain in Iraq after the fall of Mosul, where the group's leader declared the self-styled caliphate three years ago.
Three intelligence and defense officials also told The Associated Press there are an estimated 4,000 militants in addition to 3,000 supporters who were employed by the group and received salaries.
In Syria, there are up to 7,000 militants and 5,000 supporters, they say.
The officials spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to speak to the press.
In the summer last year, the Pentagon claimed the military campaigns in Iraq and Syria had taken 45,000 enemy combatants off the battlefield and reduced the total number of Islamic State fighters to about 15,000.
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