The Pentagon says it has conducted a new round of airstrikes on Islamic State targets in Sirte, Libya. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) U.S. planes bombed Islamic State targets in Libya on Monday, responding to the U.N.-backed government's request to help push the militants from their former stronghold in the city of Sirte. "The United States conducted precision airstrikes against ISIL targets in Sirte, Libya, to support GNA (Government of National Accord) affiliated forces seeking to defeat ISIL in its primary stronghold in Libya. These strikes were authorized by the President following a recommendation by Secretary Carter and Chairman Dunford," Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook told reporters. Forces allied with Prime Minster Fayez Seraj have been battling Islamic State in Sirte - the home town of former dictator Muammar Gaddafi - since May. The group seized the Mediterranean coastal city last year, making it its most important base outside Syria and Iraq, but its militants are now besieged in a few square kilometers of the center where they hold strategic sites including the Ouagadougou conference hall, the central hospital and the university. The last acknowledged U.S. air strikes in Libya were on an Islamic State training camp in the western city of Sabratha in February.