The DMSC claims to have found the bodies of 5 foreigners abducted by ISIS in March 2015. DMSC forces found the deceased during a combing operation in June 2015 and identified them after scrutinizing equipment and laptops seized in Derna following the defeat of ISIS in the area earlier in the year.

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The DMSC is experiencing significant local backlash after the alleged abduction, torture and killing of a pro- LNA Salafist resident of Derna on 4 September. On 11 September, a key figurehead of the hardliner Islamist faction, Sheikh Abdul Razzag Emshirib, was reportedly detained by Tripoli’s GNA-aligned Special Deterrence Force (Rada).

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Saiqa initially rejected the ICC arrest warrant issued for al-Warfalli on 15 August, but now reports that he is suspended pending investigation. A delegation from Derna led by the head of the Derna municipal council met with Serraj on 15 August to discuss the on going siege on the city. On 16 August, internal clashes broke out between Libyan National Army’s (LNA) Omar al-Mukhtar Operations Room over control at the Martuba checkpoint which controls entry into Derna.

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In late July after the DMSC downed an LNA jet over Derna and alleged killed and mutilated its pilot Adel Jehani, triggering a tightening of the LNA siege on the city. Local sources report that the LNA’s Saiqa Special Forces have reportedly moved to Derna to join the LNA in preparation for a major assault on the city in conjunction with an internal uprising, targeting key DMSC leaders and military targets.

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Egypt conducted airstrikes on Derna  and Jufra last week, in coordination with the LNA, supposedly in retaliation for an ISIS massacre of Christians in Egypt. The GNA criticized the strikes as a violation of sovereignty.

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On 16 January, the head of the Libyan National Army (LNA)’s Operation Dignity command centre, Brig Abdussalam al-Hassi, announced the full takeover of Abu Saneeb area of Benghazi from the coalition of jihadis after the LNA continued its advance in Abu Saneeb with air support. LNA operations also resumed last week with airstrikes against the Derna Shura Mujahedeen Council (DMSC).

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There are reports of ISIS fighters sabotaging infrastructure in south-west Libya, including an attack on the Man Made River pipeline. An anti-ISIS tribal coalition has reportedly been formed to counter this threat. In Sirte, an ISIS suicide bomber attacked BM forces but no casualties were reported, while ISIS fighter says Tunisia journalists were executed in Derna.

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On 28 September, the Attorney General’s Office released the names and affiliations of several ISIS and Ansar al-Sharia connected individuals in Libya. They provided details and photographs of accused, organizational charts, links and routes of travel into Libya and said 800 arrest warrants had already been issued for nearly 200 terrorist attacks in Libya.

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On 13 August, a delegation of Misratan power brokers and senior BM figures travelled to Qatar to meet with Qatari officials. Media reports say Qatar is prepared to support the BM’s military operations in addition to logistical support. The conflict between the LNA and DMSC deescalated slightly as the LNA eased the full siege it enacted on Derna two weeks ago, but new airstrikes on DMSC positions in the west of the city indicate a potential for re-escalation.

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On 26 July, Libyan National Army (LNA) Special Operations forces posted photos of a captured Ansar al-Sharia senior leader, Ibrahim Abu Nawwara. Conflict in Derna between the LNA and DMSC escalated last week following LNA airstrikes against the DMSC. On 29 July, the DMSC shot down an LNA MiG-23 fighter jet, and apprehended both the pilot and the co-pilot. The LNA announced a return to full fledged siege, and shut down all routes into Derna in reprisal. The latest escalation is reportedly the result of a tightening military and social noose around the DMSC.

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On 29 July, a majority of Libya’s CDA voted to approve the latest draft of the Libyan constitution draft, even as local and armed protestors attempted to disrupt the vote and assaulted some CDA members. The Head of the CDA formally issued the constitution draft on 31 July, and with HoR approval the document should progress to a national referendum within the next 30 days.

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On 23 July, a new video was released of notorious LNA senior commander Mahmoud al-Werfalli directing the execution of 18 prisoners of war believed to belong to ISIS. The video followed a UN request for the LNA to investigate the summary executions of prisoners and other human rights issues. GNA PM Fayez Serraj condemned the fatwa against Ibadi Muslims that was issued by the Awqaf and is supported by the Islamic affairs authority affiliated with the Beida-based interim government.

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Skirmishes between Pro-GNA and hardliner militias in Tripoli continued this week, ending as the GNA-aligned militias successfully ousted hardliner militias from their positions in eastern Tripoli. Pro-GNA militias reported the loss of 10 fighters in the three-day battle.

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On 28 June, two ISIS captives being held in Misrata, one Libyan and the other Egyptian, were said to have escaped from the military intelligence agency. In Sabri, the LNA discovered the remains of an LNA officer killed by ISIS in an execution video.

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The French Defence Minister called Libya a ‘failed state’ and warned that the jihadist threat remains. On 30 June, the UNSC extended measures banning illicit export of crude and refined petroleum, and urged member states to support Libya in defeating ISIS and Ansar al-Sharia.

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The remaining jihadists in Benghazi are now boxed into a 2 square kilometre area in Sabri, with a declaration of victory expected soon. However, more than 25 LNA fighters were killed during fighting in the last few days. In Tripoli, there are calls to establish a Tripoli Revolutionary Shura Council.

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