Is Haftar aiming to be Libya’s new Gaddafi?
Libya requires a determined leadership, empowered by the rule of law, as well as democratic institutions adhering to inclusive policies in order to reverse the rapid deterioration of the country
Warlord Khalifa Haftar, a military strongman in Libya who controls much of the east and commands the self-styled Libyan National Army (LNA), has been provoking an all-out military conflict in Libya. He menaces the internationally recognized government of Tripoli with the use of military force if he does not obtain what he wants. He threatens to march on Tripoli if he is not recognized as the country’s overall military commander. As such, the situation in the country could soon degenerate into a full-blown civil war.
Haftar enjoys political and logistical support from Egypt, the UAE, France, Russia and others. It is believed that such support is connected directly with the wealth of the oil-rich Libya. It is through such international backing that Haftar has dominated the eastern part of the country and recently ventured to establish a foothold in the region of Sebha. In the meantime, Haftar has consistently refused to recognize the legitimacy of the Government of National Accord (GNA) and used negotiations to buy time.
The struggle for control of Libya’s oil resources is a significant driver in the ongoing conflict. It is believed that Haftar is now in control of more than one million barrels of production a day; a capacity that allows him to gain a significant source of income as well as command militia groups.
*This article was originally published on Anadolu Agency's Analysis Section
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