General Haftar announced the readiness of his forces to start the ceasefire in the western part of Libya. The strongman has considered that it is reasonable to accept Russia and Turkey’s proposed ceasefire conditioned on acceptance by the UN-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA).
The Libyan General Khalifa Haftar has announced a ceasefire in the western region of Libya, the capital Tripoli also included in that geolocalisation. The truce starting 00:01 am on Sunday (22:01 GMT) conditioned on acceptance by the rivals.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan this week called for a truce in Libya starting Sunday from midnight, but Haftar had initially rejected the idea of a ceasefire. His forces have been battling forces aligned with the GNA since April with the aim of capturing Tripoli.
Since April 2019, General Haftar is a leader of the Libyan National Army (LNA) but his forces have so far been unable to seize control of the capital. Late on Saturday, LNA spokesman Ahmed Mismari upload a video statement that the LNA accepted a truce in the west «provided that the other party abides by the ceasefire.»
The armed conflict in Libya involves the warlord is allied with an administration based in the east of the country and is believed to enjoy backing from France, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates. Haftar’s rivals also claim LNA forces are boosted by Russian mercenaries. President Putin, who is keen to stress his role as a regional powerbroker, denied this.
«If there are Russians there, they do not represent the interests of the Russian state and do not receive money from it,» Putin reiterated Moscow’s denial of mercenaries. He added that in Libya, the large-scale military action is continuing and terrorism is growing.
According to the Russian leader, all this suspicious activity undermines stability not only in the region itself but has a negative influence on Europe, Putin added, meaning smuggling of drugs and weapons.