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Will Haftar succeed in taking Tripoli?

18 33 31
14.04.2019

On April 3, renegade general Khalifa Haftar announced an offensive on Tripoli to "liberate" the capital and the entire west of Libya from the UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA), headed by Fayez Serraj.

Many now believe that Haftar had been planning for this military takeover since 2014 when he called for a military coup in Tripoli. His attempt at overthrowing the first democratically elected parliament in Libya, the General National Congress (GNC), failed, which led him to launch "Operation Dignity" in Benghazi a few months later.

His consolidation of power in the east and then gradual expansion south and west of the territories under his control have been seemingly aimed at eventually taking over Tripoli, which would allow him to establish a one-man military rule over the country, similar to that of the late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.

The announcement of the operation launched by Haftar's Libyan National Army (LNA) came just days before a national conference organised by the UN Special Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) was to be held in the city of Ghadames on the border with Algeria.

This conference was expected to achieve a breakthrough in the political impasse and produce a roadmap to resolve the Libyan conflict which would have included holding fresh elections to unite the country's divided institutions. Such a political deal would have put an end to Haftar's personal ambitions of achieving absolute power in Libya, supported by his main international backers, the UAE, Egypt and Saudi........

© Al Jazeera