President Trump told reporters on arrival to Florida on Friday that Islamic State militants no longer hold any territory in Syria.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP SAYING: "ISIS on Election Day, here's ISIS, you look, there's ISIS, and that's what we have right now, as of last night.
You guys can have the map, congratulations." The White House says Trump had been briefed on the matter by Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan on Air Force One.
But US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces on the ground had yet to announce the final eradication of Islamic State militants from Baghouz, their last enclave in eastern Syria.
Trump has said Islamic State no longer holds Syrian territory more than once over the past few weeks.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP SAYING: "Now it's 100% we just took over." (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP SAYING: "There's a tiny spot, which will be gone by tonight." (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP SAYING: "Now on the bottom that's as of today, this is ISIS there's none.
The caliphate is gone.
As of tonight.
Pretty good." Observers in the region say air strikes and gunfire could be heard on Friday afternoon, less than an hour after Trump's latest declaration.
US-backed coalition forces have been battling Islamic State in Syria since September 2014 - when air strikes began.
The SDF says that while they've recaptured most of the area, they won't declare total victory until a search for hidden mines and jihadist holdouts is complete.