Prime Minister Abdullah Al-Thinni’s cabinet has been sworn in at a session of the House of Representatives in Tobruk on Sunday. The swearing of the 13-member cabinet, which was finally approved on 22 September, was attended by the President of the Representatives (HoR), Ageela Saleh, the two deputy presidents, HoR members and representatives of a number of civil society organizations.
A new round of air strikes carried out by unidentified warplanes was launched on 24 September 2014, targeting several Libya Dawn militia bases across Tripoli, as militia forces from Zintan and Warshefana have engaged in clashes with Libya Dawn militias on the outskirts of the capital.
In Benghazi, Operation Dignity forces launched an attack against the port, claiming to be preventing ships from supplying weapons to Islamist forces. The air strikes do not appear to have caused major damage, however. Meanwhile, an alarming spate of assassinations in the city has continued, at least eight people were killed in such attacks over the past few days.
Six civilian and soldiers were murdered in Benghazi yesterday, one week on from “Black Friday” in which 10 were killed and thirteen targeted in an unprecedented day of violence. The bloodletting marks another day of what appears to be a city-wide campaign to instil fear in Benghazi residents, orchestrated by extremists. The killing has continued with impunity throughout the week with a dozen killed in the intervening days.
Despite a comprehensive peace deal in the southern town of Obari which was agreed on 21 September 2014, a brief outbreak of clashes was noted on 25 September 2014, between Tebu and Tuareg tribesmen. While the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) has pushed for national dialogue to begin on 29 September 2014, the political crisis has shown no signs of improving, as the rival government set up by Islamist-leaning remnants of the former parliament has taken further steps to assert itself, new members of the so-called National Salvation Government (NSG) were reportedly “sworn in” on 24 September.
The meeting on Monday which was organised by the UN peace mission from all accords went well and all parties present agreed in principle to a cease fire over Eid and to reconvene a second round of talks after the Eid holiday. However, it is yet to be seen if the cease fire will be abided by the Zintan and Misrata militias.
The rival “National Salvation Government” (NSG) led by Omar al Hassi in Tripoli has continued to assert itself, most recently by swearing in a number of new members on 23 September. These new members will fill the ministerial positions for industry, transportation, education, higher education, care to families of mar-tyrs and missing, finance, housing, wounded affairs and youth and sport.
There are unconfirmed reports that Tunisian security forces have arrested six Syrian members of the IS terrorist organization who were trying to cross into Libya.
Due to the current ongoing unstable situation within Tripoli, SNE continues to advise that all non-essential expat client personnel and their dependants should consider relocating outside of the country where possible. Only business essential movements should take place within Tripoli city limits and no movement should be attempted in the hours of darkness or near the area of Tripoli International Airport and surroundings areas which are affected by the ongoing militia fighting. NO travel should be made to Benghazi until the current situation shows signs of stability. The British FCO and US State Department are still advising against No travel to Libya and have advised all their citizens to leave the country at the first opportunity available. We remain operational on the ground in Tripoli with our British Country Management Team and are able to support any remaining clients as required, or provide up to date accurate information and analysis on the ever changing situation to those clients who are currently out of country monitoring the situation with an aim to redeploying when the security situation allows. Before considering travel to Libya, an itinerary specific pre-travel risk assessment including mitigation measures are recommended. In-country personnel should be confident in their evacuation procedures and crisis management plans and in light of the current situation these should be checked and updated where necessary.