Wagner allegedly targeted in drone strikes on Khadim base as GNU, LNA deny responsibility

Jun 29, 2023 | International actors

On 29 June, facilities of the Wagner mercenaries at al-Khadim Air Force Base in the Kharouba area south of al-Marj were reportedly attacked by at least one combat drone. One Russian Il76 transport aircraft operated by the Wagner Group was reportedly hit and heavily damaged.

On 30 June, the Government of National Unity’s (GNU) Ministry of Defence denied media reports that GNU combat drones of the Turkish type Bayraktar Akinci attacked al-Khadim Base. They said they were committed to the October 2020 ceasefire and respected the decisions of the 5+5 Joint Military Committee (JMC).

A couple of hours later, GNU Army Chief of Staff Muhammed al-Haddad denied any involvement of the Libyan Army in the alleged drone strikes, saying aircraft of the Libyan Army attacked any target in the East. He claimed these reports just aim to start a new war between the Libyan brothers.

Also on the same day, the Libyan National Army (LNA) HQ denied the drone strikes. The LNA said such reports are only intended to undermine the morale of the LNA soldiers, but stressed this will not succeed.

On 2 July, a US AFRICOM spokesperson denied any involvement of AFRICOM in the drone strikes on al-Khadim base.