The Libyan Unity Government, the US-backed faction in the capital city of Tripoli, and Gen. Khalifa Hafter, the head of the self-proclaimed Libyan National Army (LNA), have signed a tentative ceasefire agreement today, promising to limit their use of force to “counter-terrorism.”
The unity government controls some territory in Libya’s west, while the LNA’s territorial possessions are primarily in the far northeast. The two sides have rarely fought one another, though the LNA did seize a few oil ports from them last year.
Perhaps the most noteworthy aspect of this deal is that the LNA, which is supposedly the military for the Tobruk Parliament, itself a would-be government, negotiated the deal totally independent of the parliament, which may be reflecting less influence for the politicians in the east, and growing control by this makeshift military heavily backed by the Egyptian junta.
It’s also worth noting that Gen. Hafter has used “counter-terrorism” as a pretext for military moves against political factions in Libya in the past, including the failed coup that led to the creation of rival parliaments in the first place.
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