19 – 25 August: UNSG assesses ISIL still a threat in Libya

Aug 27, 2020 | ISIS

On 20 August, the British court sentenced 22-year old Hashem Abedi, the brother of Manchester Area bomber Salman Abedi, to jail for at least 55 years for the murder of 22 people. Abedi assisted his brother in the bombing, being described in court as being ‘just as guilty’ as his sibling. The sentence is a record for a determinate prison term.

On 25 August, Assistant Secretary General Michèle Coninsx briefed the UN Security Council (UNSC) on the Secretary-General’s 11th Islamic State in Iraq and the Levante (ISIL) report. Concerning Libya, the report noted: ‘ISIL in Libya is assessed to number only a few hundred fighters, but it remains a potent threat capable of wider regional impact. The ongoing conflict in Libya and the risk of escalation might create new opportunities for ISIL to expand its activity. After a period of relative quiet between February and April 2020, ISIL in Libya launched a number of attacks against local military and security forces in the Sabha and Fezzan regions. The group is concentrated mostly in the south, where it exploits tensions between Arabs and other ethnic groups for recruitment and raises funds through extortion and kidnapping for ransom. It is also assessed to retain dormant cells in the coastal cities.’