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US air strike kills 7 suspected ISIS militants in southern Libya

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An American air strike killed seven suspected ISIS fighters in southern Libya on Sunday, where a breakdown in security allowed the extremists who once controlled parts of the country to regroup, US Africa Command said.

The strike on September 29 was the fourth for the month, the command said, adding that 43 militants had died in the attacks.

It said it knew of no civilian being hurt in the latest strikes.

“Our pursuit of ISIS-Libya and other terrorist networks degrades their ability to effectively conduct operations against the Libyan people,” said US Army Maj Gen William Gayler.

“By disrupting the terrorists’ planning, training, and activities, we also degrade their capacity to threaten US and partner interests in the region.”

The forces of eastern-based Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar swept through the oil-rich south-west at the start of 2019, saying they wanted to restore security and fight terrorism.

Some US troops were based in the country but they withdrew after he launched Field Marshal Khalifa's offensive.

Also on Sunday, the UN refugee agency said Libya’s coastguard rescued about 70-Europe bound migrants after days in distress on the Mediterranean Sea.

Libya became a major crossing point for migrants to Europe after the overthrow and death of longtime dictator Muammar Qaddafi in 2011, when the nation was thrown into chaos, militias proliferated and central authority collapsed.
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