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Libya: Haftar militias strike Mitiga Airport in capital

May 24, 2020 at 11:01 am

Smoke rises after warlord Khalifa Haftar’s forces launched an attack on a port near the Martyrs’ Square, where celebration events marking the 9th anniversary of February 17 revolution are held, in eastern Tripoli, Libya on February 18, 2020. [Aydoğan Kalabalık – Anadolu Agency]

Militias loyal to Libya’s renegade commander Khalifa Haftar Sunday hit the capital Tripoli with a rocket attack, Anadolu Agency reports.

The attack targeted Mitiga International Airport, according to a statement by the press center of the Libyan army-led Operation Volcano of Rage.

The statement gave no information on injuries or deaths.

According to the United Nations, since the beginning of this year, seven health centers in the country have been struck 12 times.

Haftar, the leader of illegal armed forces in eastern Libya, has intensified attacks on civilians since the beginning of May as the Libyan army recently gained an advantage and inflicted severe losses on his militants.

READ: Libya’s Tripoli government retakes more areas of capital

Libya’s government has been under attack by Haftar’s forces since April 2019, with more than 1,000 killed in the violence. It launched Operation Peace Storm on March 26 to counter attacks on the capital.

On Monday, Libya’s army retook Al-Watiya airbase occupied by Haftar’s militias, a key airbase now back under government control after some six years under putschist forces.

Al-Watiya is seen as a key airbase, second only to Mitiga International Airport. It was captured in 2014 by Haftar, who used it as his headquarters for attacks on the legitimate government.

Following the ouster of late ruler Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, Libya’s government was founded in 2015 under a UN-led political agreement.