World, Middle East

Haftar forces to withdraw from fronts south of Tripoli

Renegade commander’s forces to withdraw in last days of Ramadan so people of Tripoli can celebrate Eid, says spokesperson

Enes Canli   | 20.05.2020
Haftar forces to withdraw from fronts south of Tripoli Members of Libya's army inspect airbase after they retook Al-Watiya airbase occupied by warlord Khalifa Haftar's militias within 'Volcano of Rage' Operation in Tripoli, Libya on May 18, 2020. ( Hazem Turkia - Anadolu Agency )



The spokesman for Libyan warlord Khalifa Haftar’s forces announced early Wednesday that as of midnight they would be withdrawing 2-3 kilometers (around 1.8 miles) from fronts south of Tripoli. 

Ahmed Al-Mismari said on social media they will be pulling back so people in the capital can celebrate the Muslim Eid al-Fitr holiday, which marks the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan.

Local news outlets announced that during Mismari's statement, Haftar-affiliated militia launched a missile attack on Mitiga airport, located around 8 kilometers (5 miles) east of Tripoli's city center.

There was no information on loss of lives or damage.

Haftar, the leader of illegal armed forces in eastern Libya, has intensified attacks on civilians since the beginning of May as the Libyan army recently gained an advantage and inflicted severe losses on his militants.

The government has been under attack by Haftar's forces since April 2019, with more than 1,000 killed in the violence. It launched Operation Peace Storm on March 26 to counter attacks on the capital.

Following the ouster of late ruler Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, Libya's government was founded in 2015 under a UN-led political deal.

*Writing by Dilara Hamit

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