Spokesman for US coalition in Iraq Col. Steve Warren / AP Photo.
The spokesperson for the United States-led anti-Islamic State (ISIS) coalition Colonel Steve Warren announced on Wednesday that "phase one" of the counter-ISIS campaign is now complete.
"Our enemy has been weakened and we are now working to fracture him," Warren told reporters at the Pentagon.
"We are now in phase two, which is to dismantle this enemy. Phase one was to degrade the enemy. We focused on stopping ISIL [ISIS] from advancing and degrading their military capabilities in Iraq and in Syria. This was an effort to eliminate ISIL's ability to operate as a conventional force," he added.
He went on to point out that ISIS "has lost more than 40 percent of the territory it once controlled in Iraq and in Syria."
"While ISIL can still put together some complex attacks," Warren said, "they have not been able to take hold of any key terrain for almost a year now."
The US initiated this campaign back in August 2014 when ISIS threatened Erbil, the capital of the Kurdistan Region in Iraq. It consequently extended its campaign to include Syria the following month, building a multinational coalition who have contributed aircraft to the air campaign and trainers to prepare and assist Iraqis and Kurds for ground operations against the group.