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Pentagon sees Islamic State resurgence in Libya amid Tripoli fighting

The Donald Trump administration has reported an uptick in the Islamic State’s power in Libya as strongman Khalifa Hifter has continued to march on the capital of Tripoli.
A member of the Libyan internationally recognised government forces is seen during a fight with Eastern forces in al-Yarmouk south of Tripoli, Libya May 7, 2019. REUTERS/Hani Amara - RC1BBD718D70

The Donald Trump administration is seeing a “small” resurgence in the Islamic State’s numbers in Libya since strongman Khalifa Hifter began a bloody march on the capital Tripoli more than two months ago, the Pentagon’s second-ranking military official said.

Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Paul Selva said he suspects that forces supporting the US-backed Government of National Accord in Tripoli may be able to hold out “for weeks or months” against Hifter. The United Nations says Hifter’s Libyan National Army has received weapons from the United Arab Emirates and Egypt in violation of an arms embargo. 

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