LIBYAPROSPECT – Misrata
Libya’s warring factions have not had a common goal since overthrowing the tyrant Muammar Gaddafi. Until recently, the Islamic State (IS) has proven to be the common enemy, but now the end is near for the terrorist organization with the IS on the back foot in their stronghold of Sirte.
However, the fractured relationship between groups in Libya might have deepened as criticisms of the unity government begin to grow; the Operation “Al-Bunyan Al-Marsous”, who support the Government of National Accord (GNA) under the leadership of Fayez Al-Sarraj, are leading the fight for Sirte.
In the eastern side of the Libya, the retired General Khalifa Haftar’s forces have no interest in cooperation. Last week, the spokesman for Haftar’s forces, Ahmed Al-Mesmari, said that “regarding the operations there, we don’t have any connections with them.” He stated that if Misrata wins the fight against the IS in Sirte it will embolden them, and they may feel the urge to have legitimacy, which may cause tensions, according to Al-Mesmari.
Haftar’s hopes of getting a position in the new government are impossible with the unity government in Tripoli, stating that they would never give a position to the retired General.
Hafter’s supporters are not happy with the fact that the attack on the IS has been mainly led by Misrata with the government allegedly providing nothing.
On the other side, according to Reuters, a fighter from Misrata in Sirte against the IS said that “we get nothing from the unity government. The battle supposed to be a fight for Libya, but it has been 70 percent led by Misrata,” he went on to say that “if nothing changes, Al-Sarraj’s time will come, maybe he will do well, but what if nothing changes?”
It is evident peace in Libya is contingent on the outcome of the battle against the IS in Sirte. The situation in Libya remains unstable, and the IS are almost defeated in Libya, the challenge after beating the terrorist organization is uniting the country and rebuilding it.