Syrian rebels seen on plane to Tripoli are ‘mercenaries for GNA’: Libyan newspaper

A video has emerged showing dozens of what appear to be Syrian rebels on a plane headed to Libya where they will allegedly fight alongside the GNA, Libyan newspaper Al-Shahid claimed. (Photo: Screenshot)
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Updated 19 January 2020

Syrian rebels seen on plane to Tripoli are ‘mercenaries for GNA’: Libyan newspaper

  • In the video, the men are on their way to Libya where they will reportedly fight as mercenaries for the GNA’s militias
  • 2,000 Syrian fighters have traveled to Libya from Turkey or will soon arrive in the war torn country to fight for the GNA, The Guardian reported

LONDON: A video has emerged showing dozens of what appear to be Syrian rebels on an Afriqiyah Airways plane headed to Libya where they will allegedly fight alongside the country’s Government of National Accord (GNA), Libyan newspaper Al-Shahid has claimed.
In the video, the men — three of whom were seen wearing military uniforms — are on their way to Libya where they will reportedly fight as mercenaries for the GNA’s militias.

On Wednesday, British newspaper The Guardian published an article suggesting that 2,000 Syrian fighters have traveled to Libya from Turkey or will soon arrive in the war torn country to fight for the GNA. The Guardian cited Syrian sources in all three countries.
The oil-rich north African state has been in turmoil since a 2011 NATO-backed uprising that overthrew and killed dictator Muammar Qaddafi.
Haftar, who backs a rival administration in Libya’s east, launched a major military offensive to capture Tripoli in April 2019.
The military commander held talks in Athens on Friday, two days ahead of a peace conference in Berlin which he and the head of the GNA Fayez Al-Sarraj are expected to attend.

 


Beirut port blast crater 43 meters deep: security official

Updated 2 min 14 sec ago

Beirut port blast crater 43 meters deep: security official

  • Crater is much larger than the one left by the enormous blast in 2005 that killed former prime minister Rafic Hariri

BEIRUT: The huge chemical explosion that hit Beirut’s port, devastating large parts of the Lebanese capital and claiming over 150 lives, left a 43-meter (141 foot) deep crater, a security official said Sunday.
The blast Tuesday, which was felt across the county and as far as the island of Cyprus, was recorded by the sensors of the American Institute of Geophysics (USGS) as having the power of a magnitude 3.3 earthquake.
It was triggered by a fire in a port warehouse, where a huge shipment of hazardous ammonium nitrate, a chemical that can be used as a fertilizer or as an explosive, had languished for years, according to authorities.
The huge blast also wounded at least 6,000 people and displaced more than 300,000 from their destroyed or damaged homes.
The revelation that the chemicals had languished for years like a ticking time-bomb in the heart of the capital has served as shocking proof to many Lebanese of the rot at the core of the state apparatus.
Demonstrators on Sunday called for renewed anti-government rallies after a night of angry protests saw them storm several ministries before they were expelled by the army.
It was a new tactic for a protest movement that emerged last October to demand the removal of a political class long accused of being inept and corrupt.
“The explosion in the port left a crater 43 meters deep,” the Lebanese security official said, citing assessments by French experts working in the disaster area.
The crater is much larger than the one left by the enormous blast in 2005 that killed former prime minister Rafic Hariri, which measured 10 meters across and two meters deep, according to an international tribunal investigating his murder.
French rescue and police teams are among a much larger group of international emergency response specialists that has flooded into Lebanon to ease pressure on local authorities unable to cope with the disaster relief on their own.
Qatari, Russian and German rescuers are also working at the port blast site.