Libyan militant group accuses Egypt of Tripoli air raids

Jihad Abaza
4 Min Read

Libyan militant group, Fajr Libya, who reportedly seized Tripoli International Airport on Saturday, accused Egypt and the UAE of launching two air raids against the group’s forces over the past week.

“The Emirates and Egypt are involved in this cowardly aggression,” a spokesman for the Fajr Libya read out in a statement to Libyan journalists in Tripoli, AFP reported.

The group also accused the provisional Libyan government as well as the country’s new parliament of being accomplices to the raids.

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi denied that the Egyptian military could lead any military operations inside Libyan or that there are Egyptian warplanes in Libya, according to state-owned media.

Egypt’s military spokesperson refused to comment on the accusations, but said “we are respectful people, and we only respond to respectful people”.

He said also claimed the accusations were “empty talk”, illogical, lacked evidence, and did not deserve a response.

Meanwhile, the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs released a statement Sunday denying having bombed any sites inside Libya, and saying that reports on the issue are “unfounded and baseless.”

The foreign ministry “denies absolutely the accusations echoed and addressed by several media outlets around Egyptian military planes bombing targets controlled by militias in the Libyan capital Tripoli”.

The Ministry added that it has been keeping up with the “political and security developments” in neighbouring Libya. It also expressed “hopes” for the “quick formation of a national government after the election and launching of a House of Representatives”.

Egypt is set to hold a fourth ministerial level meeting for Libya’s neighbouring countries on 25 August. Foreign ministers from Libya, Algeria, Tunisia, Sudan, Niger, and representatives from the Arab League and the African Union are all expected to be present at the meeting.

The head of the House of Representatives Aqila Saleh Issa said Sunday, that they will not call out for military intervention from the international community. They did, however, demand that the international community “protect the Libyan people” and “prevent the flow of arms from abroad” into Libyan territory.

Since 13 July, Tripoli International Airport and its surroundings has been a site of intense militia fighting.

On 14 July, Libya’s neighbouring countries met in Tunisia and formed political and security committees to end the crisis in Libya. Since then, the countries have been holding meetings to discuss political turmoil inside Libya.

The United Nations Support Mission in Libya has previously condemned the “grave escalation” of fighting between the militias. The fighting has taken its toll on civilians, who have been forced out of their homes, and often killed in the midst of fighting.

Waves of violence have become increasingly widespread in Libya since the former president Muammar Gaddafi’s ouster and death in October 2011.

Libya hosts some 1.6 million Egyptians, according to Libyan Ambassador to Egypt, Mohamed Fayez Jibril. Recent militant fighting has forced approximately 14,500 Egyptians residing in Libya to flee, returning home via Tunisia.

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Jihad Abaza is a journalist and photographer based in Cairo. Personal website: