Al-Mesmari: The LNA Will Defeat Terrorist and Outlaw Groups – Al Marsad

The Libyan National Army (LNA) Spokesperson, Major General Ahmed Al-Mesmari, said in an extensive interviewed aired by Libya’s Channel, that the meeting of the LNA Commander-in-Chief, Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, with the UN Secretary General’s Special Representative to Libya Ghassan Salamé, was part of continuous communication between the LNA General Command and the UNSMIL.

[Libya, 13 November 2019] – The Libyan National Army (LNA) Spokesperson, Major General Ahmed Al-Mesmari explained in a telephone interview with the Libya’s Channel News Room on Monday that the LNA General Command did not add any conditions during the meeting, but stressed on the principles of the Libyan National Army (LNA), particularly its adherence to the war on terror and its steadfast resolve on completing its battle against the terrorist and outlaw groups that have spread havoc and anarchy in the country.

He pointed out that the LNA General Command emphasized in the meeting the principles on which the Libyan National Army is launching its war to liberate the Libyan  capital from terrorist groups, and the continuation of the LNA in the fight against terrorism based on a pan-Libya perspective. “The battle is not a political one, as some parties promote. It must therefore be emphasized that this is a war against the unlawful armed groups and militias outside the framework of any political dialogue or initiative to resolve the Libyan crisis,” Major General Ahmed Al-Mesmari affirmed.

Regarding the question of how the Libyan National Army views the forthcoming Berlin Conference on Libya aimed at reaching a consensus among regional and international countries on a solution to end the ongoing situation in Libya, Al-Mesmari said that the LNA General Command welcomes any international initiative based on good offices. He noted that before embarking on the war of liberating Tripoli from the terrorist militias and groups, the LNA General Command issued a statement that assured beyond any doubt that all good offices have been exhausted, whether the Paris and Palermo meetings or the dialogue in Abu Dhabi, in order to complete the fight against terrorism, and neutralize certain groups and countries that support terrorism.

The Libyan National Army (LNA)

Al-Mesmari pointed out that many initiatives have been put forward, but unfortunately did not result in any achievement on the ground, including the Libyan Political Agreement signed in Skhirat, which did not succeed in disarming the militias. The LNA Spokesman said that the issue is currently a purely security issue, and therefore he does not expect a political or security initiative before the completion of the military arrangements by the LNA General Command.

Al-Mesmari said that the battle will continue and will not stop as the LNA General Command continues to assure the international community that it draws a demarcation line that completely distinguishes between the Libyan political dialogue on one hand, and the terrorist groups and criminal gangs that are classified as such on the national and international levels.

“Berlin is not for Libyans but for those who have problems related to the file of the Libyan conflict. As we now understand, there will be no Libyan representatives present at this conference. The Berlin conference aims to bridge the gap between the countries that have a hand in the Libyan file,” Al-Mesmari explained.

“So I say to everyone, through your TV Channel, that the operation is purely military and that the LNA forces are advancing quite significantly in all axes so that the Berlin Conference on Libya shall be convened and the LNA armed forces have completed its mission or the main tasks entrusted to them,” the LNA Spokesman continued.

As for the reaction of the LNA General Command in the event of the Berlin conference demanding the necessity of a ceasefire, he said, “our reactions are not based on speculations. Let’s not anticipate events.” Al-Mesmari said that the LNA has been making excellent progress on the ground for almost three consecutive months now, without abandoning any position.

The Libyan National Army (LNA)

The LNA Spokesperson also stated that there are tactical military duties the frontlines commanders carry out from time to time, noting that the military operation is still within the framework of luring terrorists to the outskirts of the capital and eliminating them in areas identified as outside the residential cordons to preserve the civilian population and their properties.

“There is clearly a breakdown in the ranks of the hostile forces. There is a major collapse in the terrorist groups as many of them have left Libya.” He stressed that the President of the Presidential Council, Fayez al-Sarraj, is “in a real dilemma.”

“It is the militiamen who allowed Fayez al-Sarraj to enter Tripoli in the first  place. The first action taken by al-Sarraj was to regulate the status quo of the unlawfully armed militiamen and militants. This blatantly contradicts the Skhirat Libyan Political Agreement. These militias, when the LNA advanced towards the capital, contacted their supporters inside and outside Libya, such as al-Qaeda, and brought into the country Jabhat al-Nusra and groups from Chad, Niger and Mali,” Major General Al-Mesmari said.

“The Muslim Brotherhood and its militant groups came to support these militias because these organizations are transnational and do not respect the national sovereignty. They believe that their reinforcements who come from the far reaches of the world are more indigenous than the Libyan people. They share a common vision and goals,” Al-Mesmari continued.

He stressed that the LNA has provided sufficient documentary evidence on the participation of terrorists and internationally and locally wanted militants in the ranks of “the militias of Fayez al-Sarraj”, in exchange for receiving billions of dollars from the public treasury. He warned of the danger of their redeployment in the neighboring countries and Western interests in Libya as well as the maritime transportation and movement in the Mediterranean Sea.

On the statements of the so-called Volcano of Anger Spokesperson Colonel Gonunu on the pro-GNA Al-Jazeera Satellite TV Channel, which shows the use of Misrata airport militarily in the existing war and the take off of a number of aircraft from that airport, Al-Mesmari said, “We surely do not need the statements of a mentally ill person. We receive accurate information from our intelligence sources on the ground before we bomb inside Misrata. We regularly communicate with the media outlets and inform them we have destroyed such and such military targets. Based on our surveillance and our intelligence assets’ information, till this hour, there is no single statement issued anywhere in Misrata claiming that the Libyan National Army Air Force had bombed a single civilian target or a plane or a civilian crossing. All our targets are military and are used for the war effort.”

“International organizations and media platforms have already referred to the conscription of migrants, who are held in detention centers (funded by the EU), by local militias to work in weapons maintenance workshops. There is enough evidence of migrants’ involvement in the logistical support of the military effort of the militias. As we mentioned, they recruited them in the maintenance of weapons and assortment and identification of types of ammunition, carrying fighters’ rations, and other actions that are not related to direct combat, but related to the logistical support of the military operations,” the LNA Spokesman stated.

Major General Al-Mesmari also said that “these criminal gangs are hiring illegal immigrants in cleaning companies and performing other works, in addition to harnessing them for slavery. He revealed that there is information received by the LNA General Command that a large group of illegal migrants are being recruited
under threats in acts related to the ongoing fighting in Tripoli.

© Al Marsad English (2019)