>> Getting ready for a final assault on Islamic State, Libyan forces gaining ground in the coastal city of Sirte. It's been occupied by IS militants for over a year, and it's the group's main base outside the Middle East.
Now Libyan troops say there's just one district still in IS hands. But ousting the militants is proving costly, 35 men killed Sunday advancing just a few 100 meters. Reuters Aidan Lewis reports from Libya.>> The situation on the ground can be very fluid. Many of the fighters are young.
Many don't have protective clothing or any military training. You can see that in the way that the battle is conducted, and the heavy casualties that the forces have taken facing well trained fighters from Islamic State.>> Libya's Prime Minister paying tribute to his forces on a visit to the front lines.
>> Thanks to the bravery of our heroes and our young men, the recent advances that have been made have been unprecedented. Many wagered that the battle for Sirte would become an international battle. They thought it would become another Syria, but our young men proved them wrong.>> Poor equipment slowing the advance.
The Libyans relying on aging Soviet era tanks and machine guns mounted on pickup trucks. US air strikes that began early August are helping. Libyan fighters say they've hit via snipers and foiled suicide attacks. But no one knows how many militants remain in the city. Back in May, it's thought there were up to 5,000.
However many are left now, they aren't giving up without a fight.