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Haftar Announces ‘Decisive’ Tripoli Battle

Haftar Announces ‘Decisive’ Tripoli Battle

Thursday, 12 December, 2019 - 19:30
FILE PHOTO: Khalifa Haftar attends General Security conference, in Benghazi, Libya, October 14, 2017. REUTERS/Esam Omran Al-Fetori

Libyan National Army (LNA) Commander Khalifa Haftar urged his forces to advance towards the center of Tripoli on Thursday in what he said would be the "final battle" for the capital.


Haftar launched an offensive in April to try to take control of Tripoli from the militias backing the Government of National Accord led by Fayez al-Sarraj.


"Today we announce the decisive battle and the advancement towards the heart of the capital to set it free ...advance now our heroes," Haftar said in a speech.


Meanwhile, Mitiga, the only functioning airport in Tripoli, resumed flight operations after a nearly 3-1/2-month break.


Two of Libya's four air carriers operated two flights on Thursday morning. They were bound for Turkey and Tunisia.


Lutfi Al-Tabeeb, the airport's director, said domestic flights to Benghazi in eastern Libya, Ghat and Tamanhint in the southern part of the country will be gradually resumed within two weeks.


Tabeeb said flights from Mitiga had to be resumed "to lift the burden on citizens from travelling in long distances out of Libya."


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