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The expulsion of 300 “mercenaries” loyal to Haftar from Libya at the request of France

Reuters AYMAN AL-SAHILI

Forces loyal to the Libyan Government of National Accord in the city of Misurata.

Agence France-Presse quoted military sources as saying that 300 mercenaries and foreign fighters fighting in the ranks of the “Libyan National Army” led by Khalifa Haftar are expected to be removed from Libya at the request of France.

The General Command of the Libyan Arab Armed Forces loyal to Haftar said in a statement, according to the agency, that “a first batch of 300 mercenaries and foreign fighters” will be removed from Libya “at the request of France.”

The command of Haftar’s army said in the statement that it had decided to leave these “as part of a practical initiative”, provided that “direct coordination with the United Nations mission will take place during the process of transferring fighters to their countries.”

This announcement comes on the eve of Paris hosting Friday an international conference aimed at coordinating efforts to restore stability in Libya.

Since the overthrow of the late leader, Muammar Gaddafi, in 2011, Libya has witnessed an ongoing political and military crisis that has centered over the past two years on the conflict between the two parallel centers of power at the time, namely the Government of National Accord led by Fayez al-Sarraj in Tripoli, which is backed by Turkey, which deployed forces in Libyan territory, and the government of Abd al-Sisi. God al-Thani in Tobruk allied with the commander of the Libyan National Army and backed by Egypt.

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In October 2020, the two sides reached a ceasefire agreement and opened the way for progress in the political process under the auspices of the United Nations.

As part of these efforts, the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum, consisting of 75 politicians representing the three regions of Libya, elected, on February 5, a new executive authority led by Abdel Hamid al-Dabaiba as head of the unity government, as well as Muhammad al-Manfi as head of the Presidential Council.

Source: “France Press” + agencies