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Obama: Islamic State ‘Not a Caliphate, It’s a Crime Ring’

President Barack Obama speaks between Secretary of State John Kerry (L) and Defense Secretary Ashton Carter following a meeting with the National Security Council (NSC) on February 25, 2016 at the State Department in Washington, DC. / AFP / Mandel Ngan (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

President Barack Obama presented an optimistic outlook regarding fight against the Islamic States, during remarks Thursday at the State Department.

“Bottom line, there are fewer ISIL fighters on the battle field in Syria and Iraq and for those that are there, it’s harder for them to recruit and replenish their ranks,” Obama said. “As finances shrink, ISIL is also imposing more taxes and fines on those under its brutal rule. That in turn stokes even more resentment among local populations. More people are realizing that ISIL is not a caliphate, it’s a crime ring.”

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