Results tagged “Libya”
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Militants in Benghazi have conducted a number of assassinations over the past few days, killing eight people yesterday alone, and kidnapping a Ukrainian anaesthetist and his wife. Fighting between rival Islamist groups in Derna killed six people. The property of the new Interior Minister was torched in Tripoli and Misrata. The rival government headed by Omer Al Hassi appointed 10 ministers. Operation Dignity carried out airstrikes on the port in Benghazi used by Majlis al-Shura, the name for the group of Islamist forces in the city.
An angry crowd shot and killed an Ansar al Sharia gunman who had assassinated an army colonel in Benghazi. A prominent Benghazi blogger was killed on Sept. 20. The Libyan Judges' Association denounced the recent spike in Benghazi murders. Libya Dawn forces attacked Zahra Hospital. The rival Hassi government seized the Oil Ministry. A small bomb damaged a car near the Constitutional Drafting Committee in Beida. Prime Minister al Thinni's Cabinet was approved.
Zintanis blockaded by Islamist Libya Dawn forces battled militias near Gharian. Tebus in Obari repelled advances by a non-local Tuareg militia, said to be the same one that was asked by Libya Dawn to take over Sharara oilfield last month. Salah Benali, a leader of the Derna militia Shoura Council of Islamic Youth, was killed while fighting with Islamist forces in Benghazi on Sept. 16. The head of the UN Support Mission in Libya said only "a small window of opportunity" remained for a peaceful resolution to the crisis in Libya. The Parliament rejected Prime Minister al Thinni's proposed Cabinet.
Shaaban Hadia Al-Zawi a.k.a. Abu Obeida, head of the Islamist militia Libyan Revolutionaries Operation Room, was captured by Warshefana forces near Tripoli during clashes that injured him and killed two of his commanders. Two young relatives of Libya's ambassador to the UK were kidnapped from their Tripoli home. Operation Dignity threatened to bomb any ship approaching the port of Benghazi as it is being used for shipments of arms to Islamist militias. At least six Operation Dignity soldiers and 13 Ansar al Sharia fighters were killed in clashes in Benghazi near the Benina Airport. A member of the Libyan Army was murdered in Benghazi. An airstrike destroyed an Islamist munitions depot in Ghariyan. While Libya's UN ambassador repeated accusations that Qatar and Sudan have been sending arms to the Islamist Libya Dawn forces, Qatar and Sudan denied the accusations.
The Parliament fired the Central Bank governor and said the Grand Mufti will be sacked soon. Prime Minister al Thinni accused Qatar of sending three military planes laden with weapons for the Islamist coalition Libya Dawn to Mitiga Airport. Libya has also accused Sudan of sending a plane with supplies for Libya Dawn, but it was intercepted. The US said everyone should support the elected government, the Parliament. Egypt's prime minister said the Islamic State and Ansar al Sharia are ideologically linked and have the same vision.
Islamist Libya Dawn forces continued their onslaught in Warshefana, raining down 350 rockets yesterday in a barrage that killed 38 people and wounded over 80. The area is now besieged, as residents fear leaving their homes due to shelling, and roads have been blocked by Libya Dawn forces; Warshefana forces defending the area are outnumbered three to one.
Grand Mufti al Ghariani appeared at a pro-Libya Dawn demonstration in Tripoli, after returning from several months in London and a stopover in Qatar; British authorities were reportedly planning to arrest him for inciting violence and murder. Three men were murdered in Benghazi; Islamist forces are suspected. Local residents in Benghazi repelled Ansar al Sharia gunmen who were trying to take over a civil defense center.
Forces from the Islamist Libya Dawn coalition are said to be bulldozing homes in the Warshefana area, where clashes are ongoing. As Operation Dignity forces backed by Tebu and Arab militias are preparing an assault on Islamist positions in Benghazi, the forces of Ansar al Sharia and Benghazi's Revolutionary Shura Council are said to be withdrawing. Mohamed "Bouka" Al Araibi, a commander of a Brega militia linked to the Revolutionary Shura Council, was wounded by an airstrike in Benghazi. The Parliament sacked the ambassadors to Jordan and Turkey because they have shown allegiance to the rival former GNC, now headed by Omar al Hassi, who moved into the prime minister's office in Tripoli after Libya Dawn took it over.
Islamist militias continued their onslaught in Warshefana in an attempt to capture it; at least 43 people, mainly civilians, have been killed by shelling since Sept. 7. Operation Dignity urged militiamen in Benghazi to turn in their weapons, saying terrorists and criminals from the world over have been drawn to the city. Tebu and Arab militiamen are heading to Benghazi to back up Operation Dignity forces. Ansar al Sharia arrested four Syrians and a Palestinian in Sirte accused of forging Libyan banknotes. A female civilian who had worked in domestic intelligence under the Ghaddafi regime was shot dead while shopping in Derna. France warned that Libya's south is a "hub for terrorist groups."
The commander of the Benghazi-based Omar Mukhatr Brigade, which has been allied with Ansar al Sharia, February 17 Brigade, and Libya Shield, escaped an assassination attempt with serious injuries. A leading lawyer was kidnapped from a Tripoli courtroom last week. Thirty Libyan Army cadets left their training in the UK after roughing up a British Army officer. The travel of young Libyans to join the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq is facilitated by Libyan recruiting networks, which face no official obstacles.
The government expelled Sudan's military attache after a Sudanese plane landed two days ago in Kufra laden with weapons and ammunition destined for Islamist Libya Dawn fighters in Tripoli. The plane had stopped in Kufra for refueling when it was intercepted.
The Islamist Libya Dawn coalition is said to have rebuffed 26 attempts to discuss a ceasefire around Tripoli. The Prime Minister denounced the takeover of government ministries in Tripoli by armed groups. The Kufra Military Council denied reports that a Sudanese military plane laden with weapons for Libya Dawn had landed in Kufra. Misratan militias and Awlad Suleiman tribesmen clashed with Qaddafa tribesmen in Sebha.
Operation Dignity aircraft bombed Islamist positions in Benghazi overnight, including a large weapons depot, which blew up. Operation Dignity forces and Zintani militias are planning a counteroffensive in Tripoli. A Libyan Air Force jet crashed in Tobruk on Sept. 2, killing at least three people. The Parliament in Tobruk welcomed media coverage, especially as at least one one of the state TV stations has been taken over by Islamists.
Prime minister al Thinni announced that most governmental ministries and institutions in Tripoli are out of Parliament's control; Islamist forces are also said to now control about 80 percent of Benghazi. Islamist forces including Ansar al Sharia and the February 17 Brigade renewed attacks in Benghazi, killing at least 10 Operation Dignity soldiers. The Foreign Ministry scolded Turkey for interference in Libya's affairs after the president of Turkey reportedly said he "fundamentally cannot accept the parliament meeting in Tobruk." Islamist forces have taken over the US Embassy compound and nearby residential annex in Tripoli, according to a Libya Dawn commander.
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.