4 militant groups evacuate positions in Libya after Egypt raids

ALGIERS (AA) – Four militant groups have reportedly evacuated their positions in southwestern Libya in anticipation of fresh Egyptian airstrikes following the recent execution of 21 Egyptian nationals by Libya-based militants.

"Four militant groups were spotted withdrawing from their positions in the desert in southern Libya in anticipation of fresh raids," an Algerian security source told The Anadolu Agency.

He said two of the groups were affiliated with the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) while the others were linked to Al-Qaeda.

"Radical groups that control desert roads [in Libya] have regrouped in fear of fresh airstrikes," the source added.

On Monday, the Egyptian army carried out a series of airstrikes against ISIL targets in eastern Libya. The strikes came shortly after a video appeared online that appeared to show the execution of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians by ISIL militants.

Fractious Libya has remained a source of concern for neighboring Egypt since it descended into chaos in late 2011 following the ouster and death of strongman Muammar Gaddafi.

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