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    A view shows damage at the scene after an airstrike by U.S. warplanes against Islamic State in Sabratha, Libya, in this February 19, 2016 handout picture

    US Airstrikes Hit 8 Daesh Fighting Positions Near Libya's Sirte - AFRICOM

    © REUTERS / Sabratha municipality media office
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    US Africa Command said that eight US airstrikes in support of Libya's national unity government hit eight fighting positions and a vehicle borne improvised explosive device near the city of Sirte on Thursday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) Eight US airstrikes in support of Libya's national unity government hit eight Daesh fighting positions and a vehicle borne improvised explosive device near the city of Sirte on Thursday, the US Africa Command (AFRICOM) said in a press release.

    "This… brings the total number of airstrikes in support of Operation Odyssey Lightning, which began Aug. 1, to 169," the release stated on Friday.

    AFRICOM explained that the airstrikes, conducted in support of the Libyan Government of National Accord, will help deny Islamic State a safe haven in Libya from which it could attack the United States and its allies.

    On Thursday, the United States, Russia and dozens of other nations said in a joint communique that they were ready to provide lethal assistance to Libyan security forces in the fight against the Daesh.

    The Islamic State gained a foothold in Libya in the turmoil following the 2011 ouster of the country’s longtime leader Muammar Gaddafi. The terrorist organization, also known by its Arabic acronym Daesh, is outlawed in the United States, Russia and other nations.

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