The Obama administration is “on the verge of taking action” against the Islamic State in Libya, where the terrorist network has flourished in recent months, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee told Politico on Tuesday.
Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) declined to describe what kind of action the White House is considering or to put a time frame on it. But his comments come amid increased chatter in the administration about a greater U.S. military role in Libya, where political turmoil has helped create a vacuum hospitable to jihadist groups.
According to some reports, at least 5,000 Islamic State fighters are now operating in the North African country, whose fall into chaos began not long after the U.S. and its allies helped Libyans oust dictator Muammar Qadhafi during the so-called Arab Spring in 2011. In Libya, the Islamic State fighters are said to have more freedom than in their territory in Syria and Iraq, where a U.S.-led coalition is targeting them on multiple fronts.