Libya: Unity Forces Block Anti-Normalization Protests in Tripoli

Tripoli residents protest against Najla Mangoush’s meeting with Eli Cohen in Rome (AFP)
Tripoli residents protest against Najla Mangoush’s meeting with Eli Cohen in Rome (AFP)
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Libya: Unity Forces Block Anti-Normalization Protests in Tripoli

Tripoli residents protest against Najla Mangoush’s meeting with Eli Cohen in Rome (AFP)
Tripoli residents protest against Najla Mangoush’s meeting with Eli Cohen in Rome (AFP)

The interim Libyan Government of National Unity (GNU), headed by Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh, prevented a group of protesters from the city of Zawiya from entering Tripoli to join the widespread protests after a meeting between Foreign Minister Najla al-Mangoush and her Israeli counterpart, Eli Cohen, in Italy.

The unity government neither denied nor confirmed reports that the dismissed minister arrived in Madrid, Spain, after fleeing the country.

Mangoush was temporarily suspended from her position over the reported meeting.

In a leaked audio message, the Interior Minister, Emad Trabelsi, informed Dbeibeh that all anti-government protests have been put to an end.

Trabelsi pointed out that the deployment of Interior Ministry forces in the capital over the past two days had not happened since 2011, since the popular uprising that toppled the regime of the late Muammar Gaddafi.

He claimed that all state institutions were secured without firing a single shot.

The Zawiya protesters accused a Public Security force, led by Trabelsi, of blocking the road to Tripoli and assaulting them.

Eyewitnesses said that late on Tuesday, government security forces blocked the road in western Tripoli on protesters coming from the city of Zawiya demanding the overthrow of the Dbeibeh government. They requested protection from the Zawiya brigades.

Several Zawiya youth called on residents of neighboring regions to join them in their march, which they began Tuesday evening to overthrow the government and called on its military leaders to protect them.

Mahmoud Hamza, the commander of the “444th Brigade” of the Dbeibeh government, ignored the youth’s request for protection against local government forces and asked them to return to their areas.

Meanwhile, the National Human Rights Committee confirmed that security and military units affiliated with the unity government fired random shots to disperse the protests in several areas in the capital last Sunday and Monday.

The Committee revealed in a statement that several protesters had been arrested without legal procedures, saying the Interior Ministry is fully responsible for ensuring the safety of the demonstrators, and called on the Public Prosecutor to investigate these incidents.

Dbeibeh ignored the developments and appeared at a family wedding in his hometown of Misrata, along with some ministers.

Local media accused the Dbeibeh family of “deliberately provoking the Libyans” by broadcasting video clips of the ceremony, saying they were squandering people’s money and ignoring the popular uprising calling for the government’s dismissal.

Meanwhile, the former Chairman of the High Council of State, Khalid al-Mishri, said that the Dbeibeh cabinet would do anything to remain in position, noting that he had received information that several figures affiliated with the government made efforts to communicate with Israeli intelligence.

However Mishri indicated that he could not take a political position based on leaked information because they lacked evidence.

Furthermore, the Speaker, Aguila Saleh, announced a categorical rejection of any attempts at normalizing diplomatic ties with Israel.

Saleh denounced during a phone call with the President of the Palestinian National Council, Rawhi Fattouh, the outrageous attempts at normalization, extending an invitation to Fattouh to visit Libya.

Special Envoy of the French President to Libya, Paul Soler, affirmed France’s support for Libya’s sovereignty and the mediation efforts of Ambassador Abdallah Batelli, aiming to hold presidential and legislative elections as soon as possible.

Head of the Presidential Council Mohamed Menfi announced that he had received a French invitation to participate in a meeting at the peace conference in Paris next November.

During a meeting with Soler, Menfi stressed the Council’s endeavor to end the transitional stages through transparent elections, with the participation of all Libyans.



Iraq Says No Green Light to Turkish Operations in Kurdistan

Smoke billows from a Turkish strike on Iraq's Duhok. (Kurdish media)
Smoke billows from a Turkish strike on Iraq's Duhok. (Kurdish media)
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Iraq Says No Green Light to Turkish Operations in Kurdistan

Smoke billows from a Turkish strike on Iraq's Duhok. (Kurdish media)
Smoke billows from a Turkish strike on Iraq's Duhok. (Kurdish media)

Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein said on Friday his country hasn’t given Türkiye the green light to carry out operations in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region.

In televised remarks, he said the Baghdad government needs to hold more “security discussions with Turkish officials, even though it recognizes that the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) is also an Iraqi problem.”

He added that the Turkish army has been deployed in some Iraqi territories since 1991.

The deployment will be discussed during meetings with Turkish officials that will be held soon, he revealed.

Previous discussions with Türkiye did not yield an agreement over the security file, continued the FM. Türkiye is tying its deployment to the presence of the PKK.

Given that the group is present in Iraq, then it must also be dealt with in an “Iraqi way,” he went on to say.

The Turkish military’s incursion of 40 kms inside Iraqi territory had sparked widespread political and popular uproar.

Iraq’s national security council convened to address the issue.

Spokesman of the armed forces Yahya Rasool said the council tackled the Turkish violations and interference in the joint Iraqi-Turkish border regions.

He stressed Baghdad’s rejection of the incursion and undermining of Iraq’s territorial integrity.

Türkiye must respect the principles of good neighborliness and work diplomatically with the Iraqi government and coordinate with it over any security issue, he added.

Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani had dispatched a delegation led by the national security council head to Kurdistan to discuss general affairs and come up with a unified position over Iraq’s sovereignty.