The US conducted a rare action against militant targets in Libya in September 2019, striking what it later said was “a terrorist facilitation and meeting location consisting of ISIS-Libya terrorist leadership and militants.”
In April 2020, US Africa Command reported that no civilians were harmed in this action near Murzuq on September 19th, 2019 – which appears to have been confused in some public reporting with a nearby problem LNA/ UAE strike on the same date (see LC201.).
A day after the original airstrike, AFRICOM had released a statement, asserting that “at this time, an airstrike that killed eight (8) terrorists is being assessed. At present, we estimate that no civilians were injured or injured as a result of this airstrike.” The statement also read that the strike was conducted in coordination with the internationally recognised Libyan Government of National Accord.
On April 28th 2020, in its first quarterly civilian casualty report, US Africa Command then reported that “AFRICOM received one allegation from an online media source claiming an unspecified number of civilians were killed as a result of a U.S. airstrike in the vicinity of Murzuq, Libya, on September 19, 2019.”
The report continued: “After review, the allegation was assessed to be unsubstantiated. On September 19, 2019 a kinetic strike was executed against a compound which U.S. intelligence confirmed was a terrorist facilitation and meeting location consisting of ISIS-Libya terrorist leadership and militants. Significant and multiple sources of intelligence was compiled to clearly identify the nature of the target. It is assessed that civilian casualties did not occur as a result of U.S. military action.”
At the time of the action, 218TV reported that 10 militants had been killed. According to Al Marsad, “a senior intelligence source told the Observatory, preferring to remain anonymous, that one of those killed was the terrorist Ali Al Tabawi”, also known as Abu Hamza Al Tabawi or Ali Al Dernawi. Le Revolution Tchadieen wrote on Facebook that militant Moussa Hajj Azrak also died in the airstrikes.
Airwars has not so far identified any public sources alleging civilian harm in this incident. The source AFRICOM may have confused the incident with alleged LNA/UAE airstrikes on Murzuq on that same day (LC201) in which, according to our records, up to four civilians were killed.
Murzuq News had reported that in total, four air raids were monitored on Murzuq on September 19th, 2019.
The local time of the incident is unknown.