Skirmishes South of Sirte

Jul 12, 2017 | ISIS

Misratan al-Bunyan al-Marsus (BM) forces, who nominally support the Government of National Accord (GNA), announced last week that they had skirmished with three units affiliated with the Libyan National Army (LNA) in Qasr Abu Hadi, south of Sirte, while they were on an anti-ISIS reconnaissance mission in the area. There are hopes that Ali al-Haddad, the Misratan commander of the Central Region Military Zone recently appointed by the GNA’s Presidency Council, would reach a de-confliction arrangement with Haftar’s LNA in the buffer zone between the two forces around Sirte and Jufra. However, such a development remains unlikely, according to local sources.

Recent tensions among BM forces and locals in Sirte, as well as tensions between the BM and the GNA regarding entitlements and working arrangements in the city, had reportedly convinced the remaining BM brigades to pull out of Sirte imminently. However, this skirmish, which has not been confirmed or elaborated upon by the GNA or the LNA, is likely to delay these plans.