Libya’s High Council condemns attack on airbase

Alaturka Amerika ABD Haberleri

By Hamdi Yildiz

ISTANBUL (AA) – Libya's High Council of State condemned overnight airstrikes on the strategically important al-Watiya airbase.

In a statement late Sunday, the council said the attack was an effort to achieve a hopeless empty victory against the successive victories of the heroic Libyan army and its supporters.

The council also emphasized that the attack was carried out by the war criminal Khalifa Haftar and the forces behind him in an effort to prevent the creation of a national Libyan army.

A military source who spoke on the condition of anonymity due to restrictions on talking to the media told Anadolu Agency that the airbase was struck by unidentified planes.

No casualties were reported following the incident, but some equipment recently bought to boost the airbase’s air defense capabilities was damaged.

The overnight attack was the first since the Libyan Army captured the airbase from Haftar’s militia in May.

Libya has been torn by a civil war since the ouster of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. The country's new government was founded in 2015 under a UN-led agreement, but efforts for a long-term political settlement failed due to a military offensive by Haftar's forces.

The UN recognizes the Libyan government headed by Fayez al-Sarraj as the country's legitimate authority as Tripoli battles Haftar's militias.

The government launched Operation Peace Storm against Haftar in March to counter his attacks on the capital, Tripoli, and recently liberated strategic locations including al-Watiya airbase and the city of Tarhuna, Haftar's final stronghold in western Libya.

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