Spokesman: LNA Seizes Most of Libya's Derna

North Africa

The battle for Derna in eastern Libya has been ongoing for weeks as the fighting escalates between the Libyan National Army (LNA) forces and the Derna Mujahideen Shura Council (DMSC)

The spokesman of the Libyan National Army said Friday that LNA forces have seized most of the western coastal city of Derna from extremist groups who have controlled it for years.

LNA forces have captured “more than 75 percent of Derna and forced out terrorists from most of the city,” Ahmed al-Mesmari told The Associated Press.

LNA Commander Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar announced in May that his forces launched a military operation aimed at “liberating” Derna from extremist groups.

The battlefield developments in Derna came as the UN Security Council endorsed a French-backed plan for general elections in Libya by the end of the year.

It did not, however, mention the December 10 date agreed upon last month during a Paris meeting between French President Emmanuel Macron and rival Libyan leaders.

“The Security Council welcomes the commitment of these parties, as set out in the Paris declaration, to work constructively with the UN to organize credible and peaceful parliamentary and Presidential elections, and to respect the results of these elections,” said the text adopted by the UN body on Wednesday.

It said, too, that it “welcomes the momentum generated by the international conference on Libya hosted in Paris by President Emmanuel Macron on May 29, 2018” under the auspices of the United Nations.

Image: Abdullah Doma/AFP

Article: Asharq al-Awsat