The brigade sent by the GNC to Sirte is still believed to be on the outskirts of the town and has not made any attempt to engage militarily. There were reports in the Arabic media this week that Haftar had launched three bombing raids on Sirte on 1 March.

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Operation Dignity forces appear to have consolidated their control over the strategic maritime port area in central Benghazi. The Egyptian air force repeatedly targeted Derna in retaliation for the beheading of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians at the hands of radical Jihadists in Sirte affiliated with the Islamic State. The 166th Battalion of the Libyan National Army is reportedly gathering at the entrance of the city of Sirte.

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On 16 February Cairo launched bombing raids against the town of Derna in retaliation for the beheading of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians by ISIS militants. The Misratan local council condemned the take over of government buildings in Sirte and called on security forces to do something to halt ISIS’s advance.

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On Friday 16 January Libya Dawn and Operation Dignity jointly declared a unilateral general ceasefire with immediate effect. As a result the security threat decreased for all of Libya’s ports, except Benghazi and Derna due to Operation Dignity announcement that it will continue to ‘fight extremists’.

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Operation Shuruq (Sunrise) forces carried out a surprise attack on Sidra’s oil terminal employing speedboats and rockets. Although Operation Dignity forces repelled the attack, one of Operation Shuruq’s rockets fell on an oil storage tank, starting a fire that spread to five tanks.

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The battle to control Libya’s energy sector is ongoing and shows little sign of letting up. Although the Misratan led alliance forces that go by the name Libya Sunrise (Shuruq Libiyya) is still on the back foot, it has not given up the fight.

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The attack by Misratan forces called operation Shuruq is already being perceived by some as an assault by the west against the east. Indeed, the move is provoking uproar in eastern towns such as Ajdabiyya. Haftar is preparing to take the battle to Derna and is readying himself for a major assault against the town.

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