The HoR announced this week that it wants to summon Haftar to question him about the lack of progress in Benghazi. Haftar’s fight against Islamist militants has dragged on for months now and despite his having taken control of a number of neighbourhoods Islamist militants are still holding out in key areas. There was further fighting this week in Gar Younis and Souq Al-Hoot among others and LNA forces appear as far away as ever from finishing the job off. This is prompting real frustration among local residents who are fed up with the violence and who want life to return to normal. The call to question Haftar has come from a group of Benghazi MPs who are blaming both the LNA head and the Al-Thinni government for the mess.
There has been more fighting around Sirte this week as Brigade 166 continues its efforts to dislodge IS from the town. There were fierce battles at Bu Hadi, on the coastal area while Brigade 166 also launched aerial bombardments against Sirte itself. News that the Brigade had taken control of Sirte University turned out to be false. Indeed, the brigade is still refusing to actually enter the town, arguing that it wants to avoid civilian casualties and that the best solution is one brokered by tribal elders. However, it is unclear if traditional tribal negotiations will work with a post-modern Islamic State enemy.
Meanwhile Brigade 166 continues to put Sirte under siege, causing suffering to the town’s inhabitants who are complaining that they have no fuel or basic goods and that there is no money in the banks.