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Immediate Release

Statement by Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook on Serbian Hostages in Libya

Feb. 20, 2016

We have seen reports that two Serbian hostages have been killed in Libya.  At this time, we have no information indicating that their deaths were a result of the strike that U.S. Forces conducted against an ISIL senior leader and ISIL training camp in Libya. Our forces watched this training camp for weeks leading up to the operation, and at the time of the strike there were no indications of any civilians present. While the circumstances of their deaths remain unclear, we, nevertheless, express our deepest condolences to the Serbian government and the families of those killed. We will share whatever information we can with the Serbian government. When conducting our operations, the U.S. military goes to extraordinary lengths to limit the risk of civilian casualties, and in our campaign to defeat ISIL we will continue to do so.