UN experts: Up to 3,000 Islamic State fighters in Libya


UNITED NATIONS (AP) – U.N. experts say the Islamic State group has between 2,000 and 3,000 fighters in Libya and intends to control more territory in the strategically located North African country.

But those experts stressed in a report to the U.N. Security Council circulated Tuesday that IS is only one player among multiple warring factions.

The experts monitoring U.N. sanctions against al-Qaida and spinoff groups said in the report that the Islamic State group is benefiting from its “appeal” and notoriety in Iraq and Syria and poses “an evident short and long-term threat in Libya.”

The 24-page report stressed, however, that the group “faces strong resistance from the population, as well as difficulties in building and maintaining local alliances” – and the experts said its threat “needs to be realistically assessed.”

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