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Libya's government denies fall of Tripoli

Christian Fernsby ▼ | December 16, 2019
The Libyan army has denied reports of the imminent fall of the capital Tripoli in the hands of forces led by East Libya-based commander Khalifa Haftar.
Tripoli street
War in the Middle East   Tripoli street
"The situation on the ground is still in our favor," military spokesman Mohamed Qanunu told Anadolu Agency on Monday.

Topics: Libya Tripoli

"Civilians, however, are suffering as a result of air bombardment by war criminal Haftar," he said.

In early April, Haftar launched a wide-ranging campaign to capture Tripoli, where the UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) is based.

Qanunu accused Haftar of using mercenaries from Africa and Russia in his attacks on Tripoli.

"Atrocities have been committed [by Haftar's forces] against civilians in Tripoli and its outskirts in recent months," he said.

Last month, Turkey and GNA reached two separate memorandums of understanding (MoU), one on military cooperation and the other one on maritime boundaries of countries in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan recently said Ankara might consider sending troops to Libya if the GNA made such a request.

"Logistical support will be enough for us in limited matters, in accordance with the deals made between GNA and Ankara," Qanunu said.

Libya has remained beset by turmoil since 2011 when a bloody NATO-backed uprising led to the ouster and death of long-serving President Muammar Gaddafi after more than four decades in power.