(Author: Libyan Gazette Editorial Staff)
Two females and three children fled ISIS’s control in Sirte and surrendered themselves to Libyan forces saying they did not want to become suicide bombers, according to Mohamed Ghasri, a spokesperson for the Libyan army.
Libya’s military campaign against ISIS in Sirte began five months ago after the terrorist group ISIS had been in Sirte for about a year trying to establish a base in North Africa.
Libyan brigades fighting in Sirte are closing in on ISIS’s last holdout in the Libyan coastal city, said a source from the Libyan forces.
The Libyan brigades, loyal to the Libyan unity government (GNA), advanced into a neighbourhood in central Sirte. The Libyan fighters were met with snipers and boobytraps killing eight of their fighters over the weekend, said the source.
Many of the soldiers in Bonyan Marsous forces, another name used to refer to the Libyan army, are from Misrata, a coastal city nearly 300 kilometres from Sirte.
Ali Almabrouk, a media spokesperson for the Bonyan Marsous forces, said, “The forces of Bonyan Marsous made some advances and completely trapped the 600 block area in Sirte.”
Securing Sirte would be a major victory for the Government of National Accord, however, officials said that several ISIS fighters and commanders had fled Sirte before the Libyan military campaign intensified. The officials added that it is likely that the escaped ISIS fighters will continue to launch attacks that threaten the peace and security that the Libyan forces are close to re-establish in Sirte.