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Sunday, September 27, 2015

Haftar prevents HoR prime minister from leaving Libya once again

For the second time within a week, the Prime Minister of the internationally-recognized House of Representatives(HoR) Libyan government, Abdullah al-Thinni, has been forcibly prevented from flying out of the country.
Last Tuesday, militia loyal to Khalifa Haftar, stopped Al-Thinni from boarding a plane that was to take him to an oil conference in Malta. The militia actually attempted to arrrest Al-Thinni but the airport guards were able to whisk him away to safety. While the reasons for the move are not certain, reports indicate Haftar was angered by Al-Thinni's dismissal of the deputy of security affairs, Al-Mihdi Allabad. Allabad had excellent relations with Haftar's militias.
According to the Libya Observer, a source favourable to the General National Congress(GNC) Tripoli-based government, Al-Thinni was boarding a plane at Labrag Airport in eastern Libya today when Haftar militia, who control the airport, stopped the plane and dragged al-Thinni out. Al-Thinni was planning to spend an Eid vaction in Egypt. Eid ends on September 24. No reason was given for his arrest. Perhaps Haftar wants Al-Thinni available to denounce the final Libya Political Agreement, which will be released at any time since the present dialogue session is apparently finished for now. Others in the Al-Thinni government are now at odds with Haftar, including the commander of the militia forces who guard the oil ports in eastern Libya Jodran Ibrahim.He accuses Haftar of trying to assassinate him.
There might be some doubt about the incident except that it is also reported by the Libya Herald that is usually pro-HoR. The Herald is less specific about who was responsible:Libya’s prime minister Abdullah Al-Thinni was today stopped from boarding his official plane at Labraq airport for the second time in a week.No details were given about who ordered the move nor where Thinni was heading, but it comes only five days after soldiers acting on orders from a top commander stopped him boarding a flight to Malta to address a conference organised by the National Oil Corporation.
The Herald apparently does not feel able to name the top commander, Khalifa Haftar, who gave the orders in the first incident.
It appears Haftar will not allow Al-Thinni to leave the country. The HoR has already issued a statement condemning the UN Support Mission in Libya for its news release, in which the UN claimed Haftar's new military mission in Benghazi was designed to derail the dialogue process. Haftar may want Al-Thinni to stay around so he can orchestrate further denunciations of the UN. He and the HoR will complain that the UN is supporting terrorism and frustrating Haftar's attempts to destroy Islamic terrorism. Some of his opponents in Benghazi are said to belong to the Islamic State but others are part of an umbrella group the Shura Council of Benghazi revolutionaries that are supported by the GNC government.
Leon has just announced on Twitter that the dialogue participants have completed the Libyan Political Agreement and Leon claims this is a final document that will have to be accepted or rejected by the parties. He also said that the dialogue would commence immediately after Eid (September 24) and would name the members of the Government of National Accord within two or three days. He said he would give a more detailed report later


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