Other — 9 May 2016

May 9, 2016 | Other Jihadi Actors

ISIS has fully withdrawn from Derna after a year of intense battles with the Derna Mujahedeen Shura Council and the Libyan National Army (LNA), who had forged a tenuous alliance against ISIS. This is a real victory for non-ISIS jihadi actors and the LNA. In fact, Derna represents the only successful result by a local anti-ISIS coalition in Libya thus far.

Rising anger in eastern Libya last week was fuelled by a new request from the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) to LNA Chief of Staff Abdel-Razeq Al Nazouri to provide safe passage for civilians stranded in conflict zones inside Benghazi. UNSMIL also noted that a similar request would be made to Wissam Ben Hamid. Ben Hamid is a symbolic leader of the Benghazi Revolutionary Shura Council (BRSC), but military developments over the last few months have exposed his de-facto alliance with listed terror groups, ISIS and Ansar Al Sharia. The request was seen by supporters of the LNA as further proof of UN disconnect from reality, at best, or a complicity with terrorists, at worst.