Results tagged “Libya”
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The Islamist coalition Libya Dawn announced that its forces have "secured" the US Embassy compound in Tripoli; the US State Department initially refused to comment, then said that only part of the compound had been breached. Another report said only the residential complex had been taken over. Tunisian authorities said several Ansar al Sharia members were arrested this past week in Libya, including Ahmad Roussi, who is suspected of involvement in the murder of politician Chokri Belaid as well as terrorist attacks in Jebel Chaambi.
Islamist fighters fired rockets at the Benina Airbase in Benghazi, reportedly killing 10 Operation Dignity soldiers and wounding 25 more. Operation Dignity placed itself nominally under the government's Chief of Staff. Heavy fighting also erupted west of Tripoli between Islamists and forces loyal to the government, and a hotel was sacked and pillaged. The manager of a state social services fund was kidnapped in Obari. The Libya Central Shield militia, a member of the Islamist Libya Dawn coalition, offered to negotiate with the UN's special envoy.
Ansar al Sharia fired rockets at Labraq airport in Beida. Operation Dignity said one of its aircraft crashed near Beida, killing the pilot, but that the crash was due to a technical failure. The former GNC began an investigation into the source of the aircraft that targeted Islamists in Tripoli. Grand Mufti Al Ghariani urged the Islamist Libya Dawn forces to use a firm hand.
Gunmen killed a policeman in Benghazi. Four Egyptian Christians were abducted at a checkpoint near Sirte by gunmen who asked about their religious beliefs. After a report by Libyan envoy Ibrahim Dabbashi that his country was close to civil war, the UN Security Council adopted a resolution yesterday authorizing sanctions on individuals or groups that threaten peace, security, and a successful transition to democracy in Libya. The head of the Libyan military met with his Egyptian counterpart in Cairo yesterday to discuss ways to maintain stability in Libya. The current prime minister and his cabinet reportedly resigned in a "routine step"; but the government also denied a report that six ministers had resigned, saying it was aired by an Islamist news outlet.
Operation Dignity continued to clash with Islamist forces in Benghazi, which are trying to overrun Benina Air Base; a Saiqa special forces member and nine Ansar al Sharia fighters were killed in recent fighting, and prominent Algerian Islamist Mohammed Abu Azzah, a leading al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb figure, was reportedly killed on Aug. 23. Tripoli residents said that 80 people are missing and 280 homes of Zintanis have been looted and torched since Islamist Misratan brigades took over the airport, including the house of Prime Minister al Thinni and and Transport Minister Ahmed. Libya's Muslim Brotherhood objected to the Parliament's calling the Libya Dawn movement "terrorists."
The Islamist-dominated former GNC met in Tripoli and elected Omar al Hasi as its leader; the Parliament, meeting in Tobruk, denounced the GNC's election of a new prime minister as invalid. The Parliament refuted reports that it had ordered the Zintani forces to withdraw from Tripoli; Zintani forces claimed that Misratan militias seized the Tripoli airport and other areas of the city after reneging on a ceasefire deal. A private pro-government TV station in Tripoli was attacked, presumably by Islamist forces, for the fourth time. The Islamist operation Libya Dawn accused Egypt and the United Arab Emirates of carrying out airstrikes against Islamist positions in Tripoli. Representatives from Egypt, Chad, Tunisia, Algeria, and Sudan met for the fourth time in Cairo to address the turmoil in Libya.
Tripoli Airport is reportedly in flames, the day after its capture by Islamist forces after weeks of fighting. Unidentified warplanes again attacked areas of Tripoli today; previous airstrikes in Tripoli have been claimed by the government-allied Operation Dignity. The new parliament issued a statement blaming the Libya Dawn and Ansar al Sharia groups as "terrorists" for staging an uprising against legitimate powers; the Islamist-allied former GNC claimed to be resuming operations at the request of Libya Dawn.
The Islamist coalition Libya Dawn claimed to have taken over Tripoli airport; heavy fighting resulted in numerous casualties on both sides. Earlier today, Operation Dignity aircraft attacked Islamist forces in Tripoli, reportedly killing 10 people and injuring dozens more. Fighting also flared up in Benghazi, and Operation Dignity dismissed rumors that it had lost Benina Airbase to Ansar al Sharia and its allies. After closing two state-owned TV stations that had been taken over by Islamists, the government warned private Libyan TV stations against inciting violence and unrest. Some 200 Italian companies in Libya are seeking guarantees against the ongoing insecurity.
Fighting between Islamist militias and pro-government forces continued in Tripoli and in Benghazi, where a Salafist cleric who commands an Operation Dignity unit was shot and wounded yesterday. An estimated 43,500 Tripoli residents have been displaced by the fighting, and over 100,000 Libyans fled into Tunisia in July. The Grand Mufti, Sheikh Sadik Al-Ghariani, who has spent the last three months in London, stated that the Islamist Libya Dawn coalition is to be supported and the pro-government Operation Dignity forces and Zintani militias are to be opposed.
Reports have emerged that 11 planes, said to be passenger aircraft, disappeared during recent clashes at Tripoli airport. Due to security concerns, Egypt has banned all flights from Libya, and Tunisia has banned flights originating from Mitiga, Misrata, and Sirte, which are not under government control. In coordination with US naval forces in the Mediterranean, the air forces of Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Mauritania, Spain, France, Portugal, Italy, and Malta will participate in a joint military exercise that includes simulations of intercepting civilian or military aircraft piloted by terrorists. The town of Tarhouna announced its support for the Islamist coalition Libya Dawn. Fighting between Islamists and government-linked forces is continuing in Tripoli, where the airport has been closed for a month, and in Benghazi.
The Shura Council of Islamic Youth publicly executed an Egyptian man in a Derna football stadium filled with applauding spectators; the al Qaeda-linked group similarly executed two men in Derna on July 27. Clashes between Islamists and pro-government forces continued in Benghazi, where Operation Dignity sources said reports that Benina Airport had fallen were false, and claimed that Ansar al Sharia is forcing Buatni residents from their homes. Fighting continued for the fifth week in Tripoli, where shells fell in residential areas. Awlad Suleiman tribesmen tried to prevent the Sebha Municipal Council from announcing Sebha's support for the Islamist coalition Libya Dawn. Rumors emerged that Sudanese mercenaries have flown into Kufra en route to Benghazi to support Ansar al Sharia.
Islamist militias continued to clash with pro-government forces in Tripoli, where airstrikes reportedly targeted militias that had not agreed to the government's order for a ceasefire. The Revolutionary Shura Council of Benghazi, which includes Ansar al Sharia, Libya Shield, and other Islamist groups, denounced the newly formed Shura Council of Benghazi, which is led by Muslim Brotherhood figures. Two state-owned TV stations that had been taken over by Islamists were shut down at the government's request. Members of Parliament will be housed temporarily on a ship while they hold session in the coastal city of Tobruk.