19 killed in suicide attack in Libya
At least 19 victims were killed Thursday and approximately 80 others injured in a suicide attack that targeted al-Bunyan al-Marsous forces in the northern Libyan city of Sirte.
ISIL militants attacked unity government loyalist forces using two bomb-laden vehicles, according to forces spokesman Mohammed Al-Ghasri.
The terror group claimed responsibility for the attack on one of its website.
In May, forces loyal to the unity government launched the al-Bunyan al-Marsous operation, aimed at recapturing Sirte from ISIL, which overran the city in 2015.
Libya has been wracked by turmoil since 2011, when a bloody uprising ended with the ouster and death of longtime strongman Muammar Gaddafi.
The country’s stark political divisions have since yielded two rival seats of government, one in Tobruk and another in Tripoli, each of which boasts its own military capacity and legislative assembly.
In an effort to resolve the country’s ongoing political standoff, Libya’s rival governments signed a UN-sponsored agreement late last year establishing a unity government.