Libya rogue general to press 'terrorist' hunt

2014-05-17 14:27
(Mahmud Turkia, AFP)

(Mahmud Turkia, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Benghazi - A retired Libyan general said on Saturday he would press his campaign to free Benghazi of "terrorist groups" a day after clashes in the restive eastern city killed 24 people.

"The operation will continue until Benghazi is purged of terrorists," Khalifa Haftar told the broadcaster Libya Awalan of the country's second city, where the uprising against doomed dictator Moamer Kadhafi erupted in February 2011.

A precarious calm reigned in Benghazi after a deadly day that saw Haftar's forces target Islamist militiamen, using both ground and air power.

Local sources said mediation efforts were under way to try to ensure combat did not break out again.

Early on Friday, Haftar unleashed his forces on former rebel Islamist groups, vowing to rid Benghazi of a "terrorist" scourge.

The violence in which medical sources reported 24 people killed and 150 wounded came weeks after the government in Tripoli acknowledged for the first time the existence of "terrorist groups" in Libya and said it was mobilising against them.

Haftar heads a group calling itself the "National Army" which launched "a large-scale operation to flush terrorists out of Benghazi", spokesperson Mohammed al-Hijazi said on Friday.

"This is not a civil war. It's an operation against terrorist groups," added Hijazi, who like Haftar was an officer in Kadhafi's army before defecting.

Haftar's forces pounded former rebel groups in the city, focusing in particular on Ansar Sharia, an organisation designated by the United States as a terrorist group, according to the army.

The regular amy denied any involvement in Friday's clashes, and the government condemned the operation.

The fighting subsided in the afternoon, an AFP journalist said, as witnesses reported that Haftar's forces were pulling back.

Air traffic was suspended in Benghazi during the day and an official said the city's airport would be closed for 24 hours for security reasons.

Read more on:    libya  |  north africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

 
/News

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Month End Madness Sale!

Save up to 60% on across a wide range of goods from books to electronics, DVDs and many more. Sale end 31 January 2015. Shop now!

Valentine’s Day gifts – 14 Feb!

Gifts to spoil him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

Lego sale!

Buy 2 or more Lego toys and get 15% off. While stocks last. Shop now!

30% off fragrances

Get 30% off fragrances for him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off All Textbooks

Save up to 30% off an extensive range of prescribed textbooks for all major universities and FET colleges. Shop Now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Spontaneity and bright ideas are emphasized today but there is a tendency to be too impulsive and you may want to keep a handle on...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.