Issued by CEMO Center - Paris
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Clashes in Libya: Dabaiba drags country into square of violence

Tuesday 06/June/2023 - 07:32 PM
The Reference
Mostafa Mohamed

Armed clashes have returned in Libya, which threatens to enter the country once again into the square of tension.

Observers of Libyan affairs believe that these clashes may represent a return to the square of abyss by being drawn into the quagmire of war and terrorism.


internal clashes

Sudden clashes erupted between the RADA Special Deterrence Forces and the 444th Brigade, loyal to the outgoing Government of National Unity (GNU) headed by Abdel Hamid Dabaiba, in separate neighborhoods in the center of the capital, Tripoli, in response to the arrest of one of the leaders of the 444th Brigade, which is led by Abdul Rauf Kara, by the RADA Special Deterrence Forces, led by Mahmoud Hamza.

The forces loyal to the Dabaiba government carried out air strikes on several locations in the city of Zawiya as part of a security operation that they said was targeting smuggling and drug trafficking dens. However, this military operation did not enjoy an internal consensus and raises international concern about its impact on truce efforts and attempts to find a political consensus between the country's leaders that would lead to general elections.

The Ministry of Defense of the Tripoli government announced the launch of the second phase of the security operation until the purification of the western Sahel region from fuel smugglers and immigrants, and from the dens of criminal gangs and drug trade, at a time when armed groups closed fuel supplies in the city of Zawiya and threatened escalation and a harsh response to the air strikes that were carried out in several locations in the city.


Presidential Council supports the security process

In what some consider strange at home, the Libyan Presidential Council announced its support for the military operation led by the GNU to pursue smugglers in western Libya despite local and international concern about its repercussions on peace and stability in the country.

On Tuesday, May 30, Libyan Presidential Council Chairman Mohamed al-Menfi affirmed his support for the demands of the people of the city of Zawiya and his support for the process of eliminating fuel smugglers and crime dens despite the criticisms surrounding it.

On the other hand, the Libyan parliament accused the Dabaiba government of exploiting this military operation to settle political scores under the cover of combating terrorism.


Dabaiba’s plan

Mohammed Bushagma, a researcher of Libyan affairs, confirmed that Dabaiba and his government are presently making only some simple concessions on any amendment in his outgoing government in order to tighten his control over all the reins of affairs in Libya.

In a special statement to the Reference, Bushagma noted that the armed clashes that took place in Zawiya are only the beginning of Dabaiba's plan to achieve his goals at the present time by imposing his actual and total control over the land and remaining in power until elections are held inside the country.