Iraq's interior ministry spokesman said Saturday that 75 percent of al-Qaida in Iraq's terrorist network had been destroyed this year, but the top American commander in the country said the terror group remained his chief concern. Maj. Gen. Abdul Kareem Khalaf said the disruption of the terrorist network was due to improvements in the Iraqi security forces - which he said had made strides in weeding out commanders and officers with ties to militias or who were involved in criminal activities. He also credited the rise of anti-al-Qaida in Iraq groups, mostly made up of Sunni fighters the Shiite-dominated government has cautiously begun to embrace. Additionally, an increase in American troops since June has been credited with pushing many militants out of Baghdad. Khalaf's assertion that three-fourths of al-Qaida in Iraq had been destroyed could not be independently verified and he did not elaborate on how the percentage was determined. But violence in Iraq has dropped significantly since June - the US military says it is down 60 percent nationwide - demonstrating success in fighting the terrorist network.