A tank from forces aligned with Libya's new unity government is seen on a road in Sirte, June 30, 2016. REUTERS/Ismail Zitouny
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Crouching on a rooftop, Libyan truck driver Riyad Swaid takes aim through breeze blocks at positions held by Daesh (ISIS) fighters a few hundred meters away in the city of Sirte. He and his fellow gunmen, aligned with Libya's unity government, are battling street-to-street for the strategically important coastal city on the edge the Western war against Daesh. Nearly two months into the battle, the militant group has lost control of Sirte's harbor and some of the residential areas near the center of what was late Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi's hometown. Daesh started expanding into Libya in 2014 as political chaos deepened and conflict worsened, three years after the civil war that ousted Gadhafi.Sirte, 450 km east of Tripoli, became Daesh's largest outpost beyond its Iraq and Syria territory. Already, more than 200 fighters have been killed in the battle for Sirte.A week ago, more than 40 Misrata troops were killed in a surge on one front.
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