Tags: libya | sirte | islamic state

Libya's Sirte About to Be Wrested From Islamic State

Libya's Sirte About to Be Wrested From Islamic State

Libyan National Accord military vehicle in Sirte. (MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)

By    |   Thursday, 01 September 2016 12:06 PM

Libya's coastal city of Sirte is about to be wrested away from the Islamic State by ground forces operating under air cover from an extended U.S. military combat mission.

President Barack Obama extended the Sirte mission another month, unnamed Defense Department officials told Fox News on Wednesday, so that U.S. airstrikes can continue hitting ISIS targets in and around the city while Libyan National Accord troops finish uprooting the terrorist organization.

Staying in place off the coast of Libya will be the USS Wasp, a large amphibious assault ship loaded with more than 1,000 Marines, Harrier jets and Cobra attack helicopters, and her escort ship, USS Carney, a guided-missile destroyer.

"The destroyer is close enough to be seen from shore," one defense official told Fox.

One freelance journalist made note of the past U.S. attacks in the area on a Twitter post Wednesday.

 

 

"U.S. precision airstrikes have enabled (Libyan Government of National Accord)-aligned forces to advance and retake key areas of the city from the grasp of the Islamic State," said Lt. Cmdr. Anthony Falvo, a U.S. Africa Command spokesman, per Stars and Stripes.

Falvo said the American airstrikes and Libyan ground troops have prevented Islamic State forces from using heavy weapons and "vehicle-born roadside bombs."

The campaign, called Operation Odyssey Lightning, has been going on for a month with the U.S. military conducting more than 100 airstrikes against Islamic State targets. The U.S. Africa Command added five strikes against at various militant fighting positions in Sirte on Monday.

Libya has been bogged down by fighting among rival rebel groups and government forces vying for control of the country since the fall of Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi in 2011, said Stars & Stripes, noting that the Islamic State came to the county in hopes of taking advantage of the chaos.

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Libya's coastal city of Sirte is about to be wrested away from the Islamic State by ground forces operating under air cover from an extended U.S. military combat mission.
libya, sirte, islamic state
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2016-06-01
Thursday, 01 September 2016 12:06 PM
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