State Dept Official: IS Numbers at 2 Year Low

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -
FILE - In this undated file photo released online in the summer of 2014 on a militant social media account, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, militants of the Islamic State group hold up their weapons and wave its flags on their vehicles in a convoy on a road leading to Iraq, in Raqqa, Syria. The extremist group that once bragged about minting its own currency is now accepting only U.S. dollars in Raqqa, slashing salaries across the board and imposing “exit fees” for those trying to leave its domain. (Militant photo via AP, File)
Terrorists of the Islamic State group hold up their weapons and wave flags from their vehicles in a convoy on a road leading to Iraq, in Raqqa, Syria in 2014. (Militant photo via AP, File)

The number of Islamic State terrorists in Syria and Iraq is lower than at any time in the past two years, Deputy U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken told a U.S. Senate hearing on Tuesday.

“In fact, we assess Daesh’s (Islamic State’s) numbers are the lowest they’ve been since we began monitoring their manpower in 2014,” Blinken said in testimony prepared for the Appropriations subcommittee hearing.