TRIPOLI, May 28 (Xinhua) -- Four soldiers of Libya's eastern-based army were killed and four others wounded on Sunday by landmines as the army advanced against militants south of the eastern city of Darna, according to a military official.
"Our forces lost four martyrs and four others were injured in the explosions of a number of landmines in Al-Thuhr Al-Humr area south of the city of Darna," Khalid Mohammed, an officer of the army's operations chamber, told Xinhua.
He noted that the militants suffered "heavy losses of lives and machinery" as a result of air strikes.
"The army controls the combat operations in Darna and makes great progress on all fronts," Mohammed said, stressing that the "biggest danger is the landmines planted by terrorist groups in much of Darna."
The army is launching a military operation to take over Darna from the militants who control the coastal city.
The army has been besieging Darna since 2015, demanding that the Shura Council (Consultative Council) of the Mujahideen in Darna, a coalition of Islamist militias, leave.
The army accused the armed group of being loyal to al-Qaida.
Humanitarian coordinator of the UN Support Mission in Libya Maria Ribeiro recently called on the army to allow humanitarian aid to enter Darna.