Some Libyan security forces who were injured in recent clashes with the Islamic State (IS) have been airlifted to Italy for treatment.
Italy sent a military transport plane to the port city of Misrata to take the wounded.
It is however not clear how many of the injured are going to Italy for the treatment. Whereas Italy’s Health Ministry said it received only 13 severely wounded Libyans, a Libyan officer said 17 Libyans had been flown to Italy for treatment.
The number of wounded travelling to Italy is 17 and at this moment we must offer our thanks to Italy and to its people for transporting our wounded military heroes and treating them.
“The number of wounded travelling to Italy is 17 and at this moment we must offer our thanks to Italy and to its people for transporting our wounded military heroes and treating them,” Brigadier Mohammed Al Ghosari told reporters.
This is the second time this year that Italy has evacuated Libyans wounded in Islamic State attacks.
In January, 15 Libyans wounded in a truck bomb attack against a police training centre were evacuated to Italy.
Four members of military forces loyal to Libya’s new U.N.-backed unity government were killed and 30 others wounded in clashes with IS fighters near the western city of Misrata, a hospital spokesman said on Thursday.
A spokesperson for the Misrata Central Hospital, Aziz Issa, said the fighting has been ongoing east of Assdada, around 80 kilometers south of Misrata since IS militants captured several villages and checkpoints in the area late last week.
Assdada is more than 150 kilometers west of Sirte, the Islamic State’s stronghold in Libya.