Western 5 Sept 16

Sep 5, 2016 | International actors

On 31 August President Obama extended US operations in Sirte for an additional 30 days in order to ensure that the al-Bunyan al-Marsus forces are able to take full control of Sirte. Despite the growing tensions and fracturing within Libya’s key political institutions, the international community continues to support the mechanisms of the Libyan Political Agreement (LPA).  Western countries likely hope that the Presidential Council will be able to use the defeat of ISIS in Sirte to strengthen its legitimacy and control within Libya.

On 30 August, the EUNAVFOR MED Operation Sophia was fully authorised by the EU to begin training of the Libyan coastguard and Navy, and to participate in efforts to counter illegal arms trafficking. A three-phase training period for 80 Libyans is set to kick off late September or early October aboard an Italian armoured cruiser in international waters for 14 weeks. According to media reports, other EU states may also offer vessels to Libya.