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Libyan National Army Warns of Possible Attack on its Sirte Positions

Libyan National Army Warns of Possible Attack on its Sirte Positions

Sunday, 18 October, 2020 - 06:45
Government of National Accord forces during a clash with the Libyan National Army in Tripoli, Libya. File photo: Reuters

The Libyan National Army (LNA), led by Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, has warned militias loyal to Fayez al-Sarraj’s Government of National Accord (GNA) against attacking its positions in Sirte and al-Jufra regions.

LNA spokesman Major General Ahmed al-Mismari issued a statement pointing out that the army received confirmed intel regarding criminal and terrorist militias planning an aggression against its forces, which is expected to precede an attack on the Sirte-al-Jafra front and army positions.

He also explained that militias are mobilizing their forces and carrying out advanced reconnaissance missions, stressing that the LNA forces are committed to the ceasefire to ensure the success of the political process.

LNA forces are ready to respond to any attack and calls on the other party to put an end to its provocations alleged violations of the ceasefire, said Mismari.

The spokesman praised any possible rapprochement between all Libyans aiming to end the crisis, announcing that the army is putting the capabilities of its General Command at the disposal of the Libyan people to ensure the success of the political process.

The LNA accused pro-GNA media outlets of spreading rumors that foreign mercenaries took control of public institutions and schools in Houn city.

The 128th Brigade stationed in Houn conducts several patrols to protect the facilities and ensure the security of public and private properties and the safety of citizens, said Mismari, denying the presence of foreign mercenaries among army ranks.

The LNA sources and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported that Turkey is sending "mercenaries" to Libya to support GNA forces.

On Friday, GNA army spokesman Colonel Mohammad Qanunu confirmed willingness to respond to any violation that threatens the unity of the state.

Earlier this week, a field commander in GNA's Sirte and Jufra Operations Room, Akram al-Dernawi, stressed his forces were ready to confront any aggression, noting that they are in direct contact with the Operations Command to implement the orders.

The threats are the latest issued by GNA forces to LNA, and precede the UN sponsored talks, referred to as the "5 + 5" Libyan Joint Military Commission, which are set to resume.

The GNA accuses the LNA of violating the ceasefire in Sirte, despite its denial.

Military sources on both sides denied earlier reports about re-opening the closed road between the East and the West, including removing the roadblocks between Sirte and Misrata.

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