18 February – 3 March: Kadyrov claims Dabaiba will train Libyan special forces in Chechnya

Mar 3, 2021 | International actors

This week, Russia, through the vehicle of Ramzan Kadyrov, reached out to Libya’s Prime Minister designate, Abdul Hameed Dabaiba, while the UN confirmed that it had the capacity the monitor Libya’s ceasefire.

On 22 February, Russian media reported that the President of the Chechen Republic, Ramzan Kadyrov, stated that he discussed training for Libyan special forces with Abdul Hameed Dabaiba. According to Kadyrov, Dabaiba expressed interest in fostering co-operation between Libya and Russia, including in relation to counter-terrorism. They discussed training Libyan special forces at the Russian Special Forces University in Gudermes, Chechnya. According to the reports, Dabaiba stated that he intends to send a delegation to Chechnya for further discussions.

On 23 February, the UN Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations, Jean-Pierre Lacroix, stated that the UN Office of Military Affairs and Police has the capacity to monitor the Libyan ceasefire on the ground if this is requested by the UN. However, he added that there remains a lot of work to be done in order to clarify what the role of the UN will be in Libya.

On 27 February, The Times reported that that Wagner private military contractors (PMCs) ‘no longer pretend to work for Haftar and the LNA’, and that LNA senior commanders want them to leave. The Times cites an unnamed Western diplomat stating, ‘there’s a clear discomfort among senior LNA officers at the prospect of Libyans losing any control over decision-making. The mercenaries have become the master’.