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Libya's Haftar Rejects Russia-Turkey Ceasefire Plan After Huge Advances

Pro-Haftar forces took Sirte this week, and now boast they’re a few kilometers from the Tripoli city center.

When Russia’s President Putin attended the launch ceremony for the TurkStream natural gas pipeline this week, at the top of the list of difficult geopolitical crises addressed with Turkey’s Erdogan was the rapidly unfolding Libya war.

Some analysts say that the new Libya conflict and war for control of the oil and gas rich North African country between Benghazi-based Gen. Khalifa Haftar and the UN-recognized GNA in Tripoli is set to dominate world headlines in 2020 alongside the US-Iran showdown. Pundits were surprised when on Wednesday the Turkish and Russian presidents agreed to jointly issue an urgent call for ceasefire in Libya proposed to start from Saturday (Jan.12) midnight.

That surprise cooperative agreement (given Russia and Turkey back separate sides of the war) to come to the negotiating table was swiftly rejected Thursday by Haftar and his Libyan National Army (LNA). This as the death toll continues to climb as Haftar is vowing the ongoing siege of Tripoli is the “final offensive” to wrest control of the city. Haftar went so far as the call his offensive a war against “terrorists” that cannot cease until definitive victory.

In a video statement, Haftar’s military spokesman said, “We welcome [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s call for a ceasefire. However, our fight against terrorist organizations that seized Tripoli and received support of some countries will continue until the end,” according to Al Jazeera.

At least 1,000 people have been killed since the LNA’s military offensive began months ago — though fighting has been sporadic for years with at least 5,000 others wounded, according to United Nations estimates. 

Meanwhile, Turkish troops are said to have touched down in the Libyan capital earlier this week after Turkey’s parliament voted through a plan for military assistance to the besieged GNA. This after reports that Ankara has actually sent Turkish-backed Syrian militants with the FSA as mercenaries to assist in the campaign. 

Currently pro-Haftar forces are claiming to be a mere few kilometers away from the center of Tripoli. “The Libyan Army is now in Tripoli, and they are positioned only a few kilometers from the city center,” an LNA military spokesman said in an Arabic statement Thursday.

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Olivia Kroth
January 10, 2020

Lybians are probably sick and tired of foreign meddling in their internal affairs. Russia and Turkey’s so-called peace plans come a bit late? Where were they when Libya needed help to ward of NATO bombing? They were nowhere in sight, the Russian and Turkish peace dealers.

Olivia Kroth
Reply to  Olivia Kroth
January 10, 2020

And that photo of the Russian impostor Shoigu is not well chosen. A Tuva clown, posing in the uniform of a general but he never served in the Russian Armed Forces, NOT ONE SINGLE DAY! His specialty: picking mushrooms with President Putin in the Tuvan taiga to ingratiate himself, so he can steal more money form the Defence Ministry funds, in order to build more palaces for his bed mattresses. Besides being a profiteer and opportunist, he is also a serial womanizer, although still formally “married”. But in the Mongolian Hordes the Khans all had harems – so what.

Fire & Ice
Fire & Ice
Reply to  Olivia Kroth
January 10, 2020

Olivia, you’re quite the firebrand I must say.

Olivia Kroth
Reply to  Fire & Ice
January 10, 2020

Soldiers getting hazed and killing their tormentors in despair – well, such problems the Tuva “wannabe general” Shoigu never had, since he did not serve a single day of his precious life in the Russian Armed Forces. The chief-mushroom-picker of Russia (aka Defence Minister) sleeps in comfortable beds in his Pagoda palace outside of Moscow, which cost millions, probably paid with money he stole from the Russian Defence Ministry funds. MEDUZA: Russian private who killed eight other soldiers writes letter from jail 8:29 pm, January 9, 2020Source: Save Private Ramil Shamsutdinov Private Ramil Shamsutdinov, who killed eight other Russian servicemembers… Read more »

Olivia Kroth
January 11, 2020

Libya News Agency (LANA): Moroccan Foreign Minister: We Fear Libya Could Turn Into Battle Ground For International Struggles. Rabat: 9 January 2019(Lana) Moroccan Foreign Minister Naser Bureta said ‘Libya should not be transformed into a battle ground for struggles between international powers, calling for a regional and international mobilization for the negotiating table. In a press statement on Tuesday, Bureta said ‘the military solution was but to affect the stability of Libya and makes a political solution difficult in this country. It also threatens the whole North Africa. The head of the Moroccan diplomacy says that Libya should not turn… Read more »

uncle tungsten
uncle tungsten
January 21, 2020

This gives Erdoghan enough time to infiltrate heaps of murderous jihadis that he is tired of sheltering and that offend Turkish values (being NOT-Turks). Easier than killing them off himself, I guess, but history indicates Turkish competency in killing of undesirables.

Now he will huff and puff about Idlib and the peculiar aggression of Assad forces toward all those gentle folk that live there. Looks to me like it will be all over in a week, but then that’s been said before about Gallipoli and …..

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