Fierce clashes between anti-GNA and pro-GNA forces break out in east Tripoli

Fierce clashes between anti-GNA and pro-GNA forces break out in east Tripoli

July 09, 2017 - 18:29
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Written by: AbdulkaderAssad

Heavy clashes are taking place at the moment in eastern Tripoli between forces from the National Guard of the Salvation Government (SG) of the General National Congress (GNC) led by Khalifa Al-Ghweil and forces from the UN-proposed government led by Fayez Al-Sirraj.

Both sides exchanged fire in Gwiya district of Castelverde town, some 70 km to the east of Tripoli, using heavy, medium and light weapons.

The joint forces of the UN-proposed government include Tripoli Revolutionaries Brigade and Al-Daman Brigade of Tajura as well as the Central Security Force of Abu Salim and other forces like Eighth Force and Brigade 24, security sources reported.

The sources added that the pro-Al-Serraj government's brigades are the ones that started off the attack on the National Guard forces positioned in Castelverde, accusing them of attempting to enter Tripoli by force.

In the meantime, the mayor of Castelverde urged the residents not to go out, saying that they should remain indoors and avoid passing by the areas of clashes for their own safety.

Early on Sunday, the joint force of the UN-proposed government built sand barriers on the road that links Castelverde and Tajura. It also blocked the coastal road banning the cars from using it to and from Tripoli.

Tension in the capital's eastern districts has been on the rise lately since the start of some movements of military vehicles coming from Misrata toward Tripoli.

Most of those vehicles were positioned in Castelverde.

The commander of the SG's National Guard, Mahmoud Al-Zagil, told the press earlier that the forces positioned in eastern Tripoli are against the Presidential Council's policies and against its passive stance regarding the role of the General Staff and security institutions in western Libya.

"The Presidential Council helped strengthen the position of Khalifa Haftar instead of complaining to the UN about his violations and military escalation." The commander of the National Guard added, saying that their forces include army officers and revolutionaries from across Libya.