WASHINGTON, Dec. 19 (Xinhua) -- The Trump administration has started returning U.S. troops home from Syria after winning the fight against the Islamic State (IS), the White House said on Wednesday.

"We have started returning United States troops home as we transition to the next phase of this campaign," said White House Spokesperson Sarah Sanders in a statement, claiming that America has "defeated the territorial caliphate."

The statement came about one hour after U.S. President Donald Trump hinted in a tweet about imminent U.S. troop withdrawal from Syria.

Currently, there are more than 2,000 U.S. soldiers deployed in Syria.