The start of this week saw President Obama come out in defence of the air strikes on Sirte, stating it was in the US National interest to support Libya’s emerging government, the GNA. Obama said the air strikes were undertaken to make sure that Libyan forces were able to finish the job of fighting the radical militant group and to increase stability in Libya. As expected the US air strikes have drawn mixed reactions within the Libyan communities, the Tobruk based House of Representatives (HoR) said in a statement that the strikes are a proper gander campaign and demanding the US ambassador come to the HoR for an explanation, however the general feeling is that most Libyans welcome the intervention against IS.
The international community continues to support the UN backed unity government as the European Union on Thursday extended its civilian mission by a year and allocated a 17 million Euro ($18.92 million) budget for the task. It aims to provide advice to Libyan authorities on migration, border security, counter terrorism and criminal justice issues. EU foreign ministers in May agreed to help Libya rebuild its shattered navy and coastguard to tackle migrant smugglers.
The Libyan coastguard reported that 10,246 migrants were rescued off the Libyan coast in July. 219 bodies were retrieved mainly in Sabratah, still with an estimated 413 recorded as missing.
Efforts to booster the Libyan economy continue after confirmation that maintenance work has started at the Es Sider port, the nation’s largest oil export terminal. Officials state that exports could commence within a month once the opening has been approved. At the same time, The National Oil Corporation (NOC) has expressed its concern at reports of imminent conflict between the Libyan National Army (LNA) and the Petroleum Facilities Guards (PFG) at Zuetina port, and called for both sides to avoid further destruction to vital national infrastructure.
Tripoli and the west has seen an increase of activity with armed clashes occurring throughout the week. Kidnapping is still being reported, mainly for criminal financial gains.
Sirte has remained the main focus with air and artillery bombardments as Misratan forces seek to clear the final IS strongholds. The U.S. air strikes that have continued throughout the week and are easing the passage of Libyan forces as they seek to clear militant groups. Detailed planning meetings have taken place within the Misratan Brigades as they believe that the offensive is working and will come to a close in the very near future.
Benghazi and the east has seen a substantial increase in incidents from the previous few weeks as fighting in the city continues, along with armed clashes in Derna as General Hafter’s Operation Volcano regenerates his offensive. The main focus this week was in the south of Benghazi in Al Qawarishah and Qanfudah where LNA jets targeted suspected weapons and an ammunitions warehouse.
In Derna, fighters attacked two LNA bases in Ras Hilal and Kirisah although a ceasefire was rumoured to be in place. In the city itself, LNA jets targeted a suspected Shura Council Convoy. This was followed with LNA warplanes targeting a weapons storage unit. Ground fighting also took place as reports suggested 12 LNA were killed and 19 wounded as fighters attacked military positions in the southwest.
The south remained reasonably quiet with 10 kidnapped students having been released after being held in July and are now in Tazirbu area. The lawlessness gripping Sebha has extended to the plundering of the town’s airport. A large generator was stolen from outside the main building. An official at the airport complained that this was not the first time that the airport had been raided by thieves.
Janus Global Operations continues to keep our permanent expat country management team on the ground in Tripoli supporting our client’s international and local personnel as well as critical infrastructure. We are also currently involved in working with many of our clients on their re-entry planning, security risk management surveys and political sector analysis. To discuss these services further please contact us on the details below.
Libya Security Report Subscription Service
Janus Global Operations Libya Security Summaries are only supplied to existing Libya clients and those who subscribe to our weekly reporting service. For further information on how to subscribe and our monthly costs, please contact our Dubai management team at [email protected]. The attached Libya security update has been produced by our Tripoli based in-country management team and covers the various security risks, recent incidents, political landscape and geography in both the west and east of Libya.
HEAT & Basic Life Support Two Day Training Courses
Janus Global Operations are now offering bespoke Libya oriented or generic MENA Hostile Environment Awareness & Basic Life Support Medical Training Courses in Dubai or your home country prior to deploying back into Libya, or in country training for those who require this service in Tripoli. Please contact our Dubai Head Office for more information on these courses at [email protected]