Forces Under Libyas Haftar Say Theyre Close To Taking Final Eastern Holdout


DERNA, Libya – On the front lines of their campaign to take the coastal city of Derna, forces under Libyan commander Khalifa Haftar say they face just a few dozen “remnant” fighters who have deployed snipers and planted explosives to stave off inevitable defeat.

Seizing Derna would complete the takeover of Libya’s east by Haftar, who built up his Libyan National Army (LNA) during three-year campaign for Benghazi, Libya’s second city. But the Derna fighting could also undercut U.N.-led efforts to stabilize Libya by reconciling eastern-based factions aligned with Haftar and rival groups located in the country’s more populous west.

In neighborhoods of Derna already secured by the LNA, life is slowly returning to streets scarred by recent battles – though fears for those detained by the LNA or trapped by the combat have grown.

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