50 killed in libya strikes-Air force

Libya’s air force chief said Monday that at least 50 people
had been killed in air strikes by Egyptian and Libyan
warplanes launched after jihadists beheaded a group of
Egyptian Christians.
There was no way to independently confirm the claim made
by Libyan air force chief Saqr al-Jaroushi to Egyptian
Jaroushi told the private CBC Extra broadcaster that Egyptian
and Libyan warplanes had struck Islamic State group targets
in the country including bases and weapons depots.
“Egypt has the right to defend its children and has struck in
Derna… the number of those killed is at least 50,” he told
CBC Extra in response to a question on the number of
militants killed.
Egypt’s military earlier said it had launched the strikes in
Libya in response to a video released by the jihadists
showing the beheadings of 21 Egyptian Copts.
Jaroushi said there is a “high level of coordination” between
Libyan and Egyptian forces, especially regarding intelligence.
He suggested the raids had hit areas where the Libyan
military has been unable to target jihadists.
“We just want air strikes to hit some of the targets that are
out of our reach,” Jaroushi said.
Oil-rich Libya has slipped into chaos since Moamer Kadhafi
was killed in 2011 during a NATO-backed revolt, with its
elected government losing control of the capital.
Pro-government forces have been battling Islamist militias
who took control of the country’s biggest cities last summer
after their defeat in elections.


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