by WorldTribune Staff, August 26, 2016
The United States has deployed AH-1W SuperCobra attack helicopters to Libya to join U.S. operations against Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL), begun this month.
The SuperCobras, the Marines’ twin-engine gunships, carried out operations against ISIL targets in Sirte in the past few days, according to U.S. Africa Command spokesman Charles Prichard.
“We have a range of capabilities at various locations in the region that will allow us to carry out these airstrikes,” Prichard said in an email to Military.com. “The AH-1 Cobras provide precision airstrike capability and close air support to better enable [Libyan government] ground objectives.”
The U.S. has carried out 77 airstrikes in support of Libyan Government of National Accord (GNA) troops since Aug. 1, Prichard said.
“The U.S. stands with the international community in supporting the GNA as it strives to restore stability and security to Libya,” AFRICOM officials said in the statement.
“These actions, and those we have taken previously, will help deny Daesh (ISIL) a safe haven in Libya from which it could attack the United States and our allies.”