Judges at the International Criminal Court (ICC) on Tuesday issued an arrest warrant for a Libyan National Army (LNA)commander accused over the alleged execution of dozens of prisoners. Prosecutors at the world's permanent war crimes court are seeking Mahmoud al-Werfalli's hand-over to face charges of murder during the armed conflict in Libya.
Forces loyal to the Libyan National Army (LNA) in eastern Libya appear to have executed captured fighters in Benghazi and desecrated corpses, Human Rights Watch said today. Video recordings posted online since January 2017 seem to show LNA fighters carrying out seven distinct unlawful executions of “extremists.”
Among the many civil wars ravaging the Arab world – in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Egypt – the one Westerners hear the least about may prove the most dangerous: Libya. The civil war that has been raging in Libya since 2011 is, in many ways, a proxy war pitting Qatar and its Muslim Brotherhood allies against the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia. The Qatari-Emirati rivalry, which became front-page news last week when Saudi Arabia and its allies severed diplomatic ties with Qatar, has been the significant factor in the continuation of the current Libyan Civil War, much more so than nationalistic or Islamist ideologies.
An LGBT rights activist from the Libyan city of Benghazi has received asylum in Germany. The activist, who asked the Washington Blade not to publish his name, on Monday said during an exclusive interview from Berlin that he arrived in Germany in May. The activist said he applied for asylum less than two weeks ago with the help of Amnesty International. The activist told the Blade those who seek asylum in Germany typically wait up to a year to hear whether the government has approved their request. “Today I was surprised,” said the activist. “[The government] gave me an answer very fast, within 10 days, and they granted me full asylum.”
UN envoy to Libya Ghassan Salama arrived in Libya’s northwestern city of Misurata on Tuesday on an unannounced visit. Without giving further details, the UN’s mission in Libya tweeted that Salama had “arrived at Misurata airport to meet with political and community leaders”. Last week, the UN envoy visited the city of Tobruk, where he met with Aqila Salih, speaker of Libya’s Tobruk-based parliament. Salama also paid a visit to Libyan capital Tripoli, where he met with Abdul Rahman al-Suwaheli, head of the UN-backed unity government’s presidential council.
The number of African migrants arriving in Italy after crossing the Mediterranean from Libya dropped by more than half in July from June, the European Union's border agency Frontex said on Monday. Frontex said 10,160 migrants arrived from Northern Africa on Italy's southern shores in July, 57 percent fewer than in June and the lowest level of arrivals in July since 2014.
In the continuing row over the presence of Italian naval vessels in Libya waters, the interim government of Abdullah Al-Thinni has said that no new contracts will be given to Italian companies. According to the Beida-based government’s Facebook page, economy and industry minister Munir Ali Asr has decreed that Italian companies will be banned from winning new contracts nor have existing ones extended. Additionally, Italian companies will not be allowed to set up joint venture with Libyan ones. This was “until further notice”, a ministry statement said.
Libyan National Army (LNA) pilot Colonel Adel Jehani whose aircraft was downed over Derna was killed by a single shot to the head, a pathologist has claimed. The Libyan Red Crescent brought Jehani’s body back the Benghazi today by helicopter. The mujahideen in Derna originally said that Jehani and his co-pilot Waeel Waqwaq were captured when after they had ejected from their Mig-21. However a later statement said that Jehani had been executed in revenge for LNA air attacks on the town. The fate of Waqwaq is still unknown.
People traffickers bringing migrants to Europe are shifting their routes to open a back door through the Black Sea and outmaneuver the authorities seeking to stop them. Sixty-nine Iraqi migrants were arrested trying to reach the Romanian Black Sea coast, having set off from Turkey in a motorized yacht piloted by Bulgarian and Cypriot smugglers. The arrests come as new figures show that the number of Mediterranean crossings from Turkey to Greece and from Libya to Italy has fallen sharply after a series of measures to curb the migrant flow on those routes.