Libyan forces foil IS suicide car bombs, advance into final positions in Sirte

Forces loyal to Libya's UN-backed unity government gather at the site of a car-bomb attack carried out by an Islamic State (IS) group jihadist at the western entrance of Sirte on June 2, 2016. According to Libyan officials fighting resumed on June 1 on the outskirts of Sirte between their forces and jihadist during which three pro-government troops had been killed and 10 more wounded. Sirte was the hometown of slain dictator Moamer Kadhafi and, since seizing it in June last year, IS has turned it into a recruitment and training camp / AFP PHOTO / MAHMUD TURKIA

IS militants in Sirte have carried out nine suicide bombings in one day in a failed bid to hold a central district of Sirte, pro-government forces said Wednesday.

The attacks on Tuesday in the coastal city left 10 pro-government fighters dead and 82 wounded, said Reda Issa, a spokesman for forces allied with the unity government.

They took place as forces loyal to the Government of National Accord (GNA) advanced on Sirte’s central Neighbourhood 2 as part of a three-month long offensive to oust the jihadists from the city.

An IS fighter blew up his vehicle close to a group of soldiers and journalists, wounding several, said an AFP photographer.

Five of the bombers attacked using cars, one on a motorbike and three on foot, said the pro-GNA forces, which published several photos of the bombers’ corpses.

The spokesman of the Libyan forces of Al-Bunyan Al-MArsous, Muhammad Al-Ghasri, announced Wednesday that the UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) will appoint a military leader to govern the city of Sirte after the fight ends and after IS militants are eradicated.

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