Libya’s UN-recognized government on Wednesday launched a new military push against the forces of warlord Khalifa Haftar.
The Operation Peace Storm of the Government of National Accord (GNA) took aim at Haftar’s forces south of Tripoli, the capital, said the GNA press center.
The operation was launched in response to Haftar’s militias repeated violations of the cease-fire and attacks on civilians in Tripoli, it added.
Haftar militias on Tuesday attacked a hospital in Ain Zara province, wounding three healthcare providers. In the last two days, rocket attacks by Haftar militias claimed the lives of six civilians.
Osama al-Juwaili, the commander of Operation Peace Storm, also said they have seized the Libyan National Military airbase and also captured some militia elements.
Since the ouster of late ruler Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, two seats of power have emerged in Libya: Haftar in eastern Libya, supported by Egypt and the United Arab Emirates, and the GNA in Tripoli, which enjoys UN and international recognition.
The GNA has been under attack by Haftar’s forces since last April, with more than 1,000 killed in the violence.
International efforts to reach a cease-fire have been stymied by Haftar’s side flouting the process.
*Writing by Firdevs Bulut