After the unanimous UN Security Council resolution of 23 Dec enshrining a new Government of National Accord (GNA) for Libya, Western governments are reportedly expediting plans to support the GNA in combating ISIS.
Ibrahim Dabbashi, Libyan ambassador to the UN, told La Stampa newspaper: “Italy, France, Britain and the United States are preparing air strikes to hit the bases of ISIS in Sirte. I believe that as soon as the political conditions allow, they will take action.” New reports from French paper Le Figaro, citing sources close to the French DoD, say that France is trying to put together a European coalition for a military intervention in Libya against ISIS in the first half of 2016.
The PM designate of the GNA, Faiez Serrajm is beginning to receive wide recognition, meeting with presidents of Tunisia, Egypt and the Italian PM over the weekend. He is likely working on hammering out the exact conditions and language for his government to call for international support.
New figures released by the Tunisian government have upped estimates of ISIS forces in Libya to 4000-5000 fighters, from the original 3000 speculated in the UN report released two weeks ago.