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Libya: Sirte offensive six months on

Libya: Sirte offensive six months on

Libya

More than six months after the offensive to retake Libya’s city of Sirte from Islamic State fighters began, the militants are still holding on to small parts of the town.

Despite having a strong foothold in and around the city the Libyan army says IS has managed to stave off total defeat and have managed to hold on to the neighbourhood of Al Giza Al Bahriyia.

Since August 1, the Libyan army’s offensive has been backed by the US and its Western allies.

The US Africa Command center (AFRICOM) said as of November 8, there have been 398 airstrikes against IS.

“The U.S. stands with the international community in supporting the Government of National Accord as it strives to restore stability and security to Libya.”

“These actions, and those we have taken previously, will help deny Daesh a safe haven in Libya from which it could attack the United States and our allies,” AFRICOM said in a statement.

More than half of these precision bombings were launched in October, the third month of the campaign.

But the airstrikes have slowed this month, with only one reported bombing.

Several hundred government-allied fighters drawn from Misrata and elsewhere have been killed, and a few thousand more wounded, during the heavy block-by-block fighting in Sirte.

Agencies

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