Other — 13 June 2016

Jun 13, 2016 | Other Jihadi Actors

Over the last week, there has been increasing conflict between jihadi actors and the Libyan National Army (LNA) in eastern Libya. The LNA offensive in Benghazi continues to face fierce resistance from ISIS militants, Ansar Al Sharia (AAS) fighters and the Benghazi Revolutionary Shura Council (BRSC) fighters in Sabri and Souq Al-Hout. Meanwhile, LNA airstrikes on Derna Mujahedeen Shura Council (DMSC) targets have inspired local hostility.

The conflict between the LNA is beginning to escalate in Derna, and re-precipitating in Ajdabiya. On 8 June in Derna, LNA jets targeted the port with airstrikes. No damages were evident in the port but a supply vehicle for the DMSC was reportedly destroyed near the harbour. Fighting also took place between the LNA and the DMSC fighters in Al Dahr Al Hamar on 8 June. An LNA airstrike on 9 June, in which 3 civilians were killed, intensified tensions between local Derna population and the LNA, provoking both the DMSC and the local council to condemn the attack, while the anti-LNA current called for a war crimes tribunal against the General Khalifa Haftar.

In Ajdabiya, LNA units are mobilising to secure the city in anticipation of an advance of jihadi forces to Benghazi. Tensions rose on 9 June when the recently established Ajdabiya Revolutionary Shura Council announced support to the newly established Benghazi Defense Corps that is currently positioned in Jufra.