Air strike targets suspected ISIS convoy in Libya

A Libyan soldier looks through binoculars at Wadi Bey, where troops are manning outposts, west of the Islamic State-controlled city of Sirte. (File photo: Reuters)

Aircraft attacked a convoy carrying suspected ISIS militants near the northwestern Libyan town of Bani Walid early on Sunday, an official said.

No group claimed responsibility for the attack, though both the United States and Libyan government forces have launched airstrikes on militant in recent months.

A Pentagon official said the U.S. military was not involved in the action but provided no other details. It was not clear whether the airstrikes could have been carried out by drones operated by other U.S. government agencies.

Three huge explosions rocked the area around dawn, the member of Bani Walid’s municipal council told Reuters.

People living in Ras al-Tbel, about 80 km southeast of Bani Walid, had seen the same convoy of up to 15 vehicles carrying the black flags of ISIS over the past two days, the official added.

It was not immediately clear if the convoy was hit.

Militant groups have taken advantage of political chaos to expand their presence in Libya and fighters loyal to ISIS have taken control of the coastal city of Sirte, about 260km east of Bani Walid.

Western officials say they are discussing airstrikes and special forces operations in Libya against the group that is seeking to set up a cross-border caliphate and has already seized large areas of Syria and neighboring Iraq.

U.S. aircraft attacked a suspected ISIS training camp on the outskirts of the western Libyan city of Sabratha this month, and launched two more airstrikes against militant commanders in Libya last year.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:47 - GMT 06:47
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