The United States has officially ended its operation in the Libyan city of Sirte following the defeat of Daesh in the city.
“In partnership with the Libyan Government of National Accord [GNA], the operation succeeded in its core objective of enabling GNA-aligned forces to drive Daesh out of Sirte,” the US military’s Africa Command said in a statement yesterday.
Named “Operation Odyssey Lightning”, the US joined Libyan forces from the GNA on 1 August this year to help push Daesh militants from their stronghold in Sirte.
The US military operation contributed to 495 strikes with using drones, warplanes and gunships to drive Daesh out.
“We are proud to have supported this campaign to eliminate [Daesh’s] hold over the only city it has controlled outside Iraq and Syria,” Peter Cook, the Pentagon press secretary explained.
Though losing Sirte is yet another setback for Daesh, it is likely its members will regroup elsewhere and continue their operations. US officials have confirmed that they will continue to strike Deash fighters if the Libyan unity government requests assistance again.
GNA leader Fayez Al-Sarraj announced over the weekend that the military operations in Sirte were completed with UN special envoy Martin Kobler calling on Libyans to remain vigilant against terrorists.