13 fighters from Defend Benghazi Brigades were killed in foreign airstrikes in east Libya on Wednesday; 3 days after 2 French troops were killed in a helicopter downing.

Sources close to DBB said the airstrikes were conducted by French warplanes in Jilidiya district, 60 km east of Ajdabiya.

"The airstrikes were in retaliation for the killing of 2 French special forces troops in the helicopter downing in Magrun on Sunday," the sources added.

Defend Benghazi Brigades released Sunday images of dead bodies from the helicopter downing saying 2 of them were French.

The airstrikes have caused outrage on social media with activists calling for protests to denounce this intervention. The General National Congress has also condemned the airstrikes and regarded them as a declaration of war.

The French Defense Ministry confirmed Wednesday the killing of 3 French troops in Libya. French government spokesperson Stephane Le Foll has also confirmed presence of French special forces in Libya.

Recent leaks have revealed that France and other western countries are backing rogue General Khalifa Haftar in his war against his opponents in Benghazi.