News ID: 264962
Published: 0632 GMT January 28, 2020

Libya’s government forces shoot down rebels’ Emirati-supplied drone

Libya’s government forces shoot down rebels’ Emirati-supplied drone

Libyan government forces have shot down an Emirati-supplied drone operated by rebel forces in western Libya.

The Tripoli-based government said in a statement on Tuesday that its anti-aircraft defenses had shot down the drone east of Misrata, Libya’s third largest city. 

The government also posted images on Facebook showing what appeared to be a Chinese-made Wing Loong drone, Presstv Reported.

Rebel forces under the command of a renegade general, Khalifa Haftar, have been supplied a number of the aircraft from the United Arab Emirates, his main backer.

Since 2014, Libya has been divided between two rival camps — the Tripoli-based government of Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj, and a camp in the eastern city of Tobruk, supported militarily by Haftar’s forces.

In April, those rebel forces launched an assault on the capital to unseat Sarraj’s government. While Haftar’s advance has stalled on the edge of Tripoli, he captured the strategic coastal city of Sirte in early January.

Meanwhile, fighting in southern Tripoli abated in the past weeks but picked up at the weekend.

A fragile ceasefire between the government and Haftar in Tripoli was announced by Moscow and Ankara on January 12. But it has effectively collapses with continued fighting.

Libya plunged into chaos in 2011, when a popular uprising and a NATO intervention led to the ouster of long-time leader Muammar Gaddafi.

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