Middle East

Egyptian army chief-of-staff meets with Libya’s Haftar

Visit is first of its kind for Arab military official since eruption of armed clashes three years ago in Benghazi

Egyptian army chief-of-staff meets with Libya’s Haftar Egyptian Army Chief-of-Staff Mahmoud Hegazy


By Jihad Nasr


Egyptian Army Chief-of-Staff Mahmoud Hegazy on Wednesday met with Khalifa Haftar, leader of the self-proclaimed Libyan National Army (LNA), in the Libyan port city of Benghazi.  

The visit is the first of its kind for an Egyptian -- or Arab -- military official since the outbreak of armed clashes in Benghazi some three years ago. 

According to a statement published on the LNA’s official Facebook page, Haftar met with Hegazy at his office in Benghazi’s ​​Rajma district. 

The LNA’s media office provided no details regarding the objectives of Hegazy's visit, saying merely that he had arrived at Benghazi’s Benina Airport on Wednesday where he was received by LNA officials. 

Last Saturday, Haftar paid a visit to Egypt, where he met with Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, with whom he discussed recent developments in Libya and efforts to promote dialogue between the North African country’s warring factions.

Libya has remained in a state of turmoil since early 2011, when a bloody uprising ended with the ouster and death of longtime leader Muammar Gaddafi.

Since then, the country’s stark political divisions have yielded at least three different seats of government and a host of rival militia groups.

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