In Ajdabiya, a statement published by the Ajdabiya Revolutionaries’ Shoura Council (ARSC) on 2 Jan denied that it has defected to IS, after its emir and a dozen of its members published a video last week pledging allegiance to the group last week.

The statement said that the group photographed with a black IS banner was made up of individuals acting without the authority of the Council, and that they have now absconded to Sirte.

In Benghazi, the war of words between IS and the Benghazi Revolutionary Shura Council (BRSC) has intensified, after IS published a strongly worded rebuttal of the BRSC statement last week, which sought to reprimand IS for its slander of the BRSC.

IS social media articles and speeches continue to criticize the BRSC for not pledging allegiance to IS, accusing them of remaining loyal instead to Libya Dawn and the ‘forces of Democracy’. These are interpreted as proofs of their ‘apostasy’. IS is also using a recent video released by the BRSC of LNA units, captured in the South of Libya and transferred by Libya Dawn militias to Tripoli and then back to BRSC hands, as proof of their accusations.