Other 18 Oct 16

Oct 18, 2016 | Other Jihadi Actors

Militants from the Benghazi Shura Revolutionary Council (BRSC) and ISIS are still resisting Libyan National Army (LNA) advances in Ganfuda in south west Benghazi, and Sabri/Souq al-Hout in the centre of Benghazi. Amaq, the ISIS media arm, released a clip showing a T-55 tank targeting LNA observation posts in Gawarsha last week. On 15 October, Amaq also claimed that a sniper unit killed 2 LNA fighters in the Sabri area, while ISIS members in Guwarsha reported launching 82 mm rounds on an LNA field hospital in the area.

Major conflict is feared between pro-GNA militias in Tripoli, like those led by Haithem Tajouri and Abdel Ghani al-Kikli (known as Gheniwa), and Islamist and Misratan militias who support Khalifa al-Ghwell and a GNC comeback. Both forces have mobilised extensive arms on the streets in Tripoli in anticipation of a showdown. Although Tajouri and Gheniwa nominally support the GNA, they have so far focused only on protecting the areas of Tripoli which they control. Gheniwa is refusing to start a war on his turf, which is where the Presidential Palaces seized by Ghwell are located, while Tajouri has barricaded Tripoli’s Martyr’s Square to prevent hard-liners and Islamist forces from gathering there and triggering clashes.

In Derna, the LNA resumed its bombardment of Derna Mujahedeen Shura Council (DMSC) positions on 14 and 15 October. Derna’s power station was hit, sending large areas of the city into blackout.